How can we replace the lies we believe about sex in marriage?

Lies have loud voices—especially lies about sex and our sexuality.

  • I am not beautiful.
  • I am not lovable.
  • My husband wants me only for sex.
  • Sex is only for men.
  • Sex is dirty.
  • I am dirty if I want sex.
  • Sexual activity needs to be preceded by my desire—and if I’m not feeling it, I’m not doing it.
  • Men want more sex than they need it.
  • Sex should happen only when everything else in the marriage or in life good.
  • My husband’s interest in a new sexual activity is perverted.
  • My husband needs to deserve sex.
  • I don’t deserve sex.
  • If I let myself experience desire and arousal with my husband, it means that the arousal I experienced at the hands of my abuser means that I wanted it.
  • Sex is my duty.

My sexual self was infused with these lies for years. Between the baggage I brought into my marriage and the cultural messages about married sex, I “knew” more lies than I knew truths. Sadly, women who bring no sexual baggage to their marriages and have limited exposure to cultural messages about sex can bring lies they learned from church. (See this piece from Relevant.)

Big Guy would make a sexual advance, and a handful of these lies would jump into my head. He would look at me with a twinkle in his eyes and say, “You’re so beautiful.” Instead of hearing his heart, I heard the lies. I would think about a tingle I’d been experiencing throughout the day, and instead of grabbing my husband, I would look at the pile of dirty dishes. My husband would say, “ya wanna?” and I would say “no” without thinking to add “but if you come over here you can change my mind.”

Even if I’d had a stronger foundation for my marriage, the lies were like termites that ate away at it.

Part of the journey toward true intimacy is nothing less than replacing the lies with truth. But how?

Learn God’s Truth

Lies about sex and sexuality are so loud that we don’t even recognize that they are lies—so the first step is to learn what God has designed for us in sexual intimacy with our husbands.

The Bible

Our best source for God’s design for sexual intimacy and marriage is His Word.

When I am trying to remind myself of God’s design for marriage, I will go to Genesis 2, 1 Corinthians 7, or Ephesians 5. These passages about marriage remind me that it is being one flesh with my husband that I am most whole, that we should not deprive each other, and that God has a design for how marriage works. When I want to be reminded of the joy I can find in the marriage bed, I will usually go to Song of Solomon.

If your sexual refusing and gate-keeping have been a reflection of selfishness, anger, or hurt, you should also read the Bible for guidance in addressing those.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding ~ Proverbs 3:5


Invite God into the process. When you find something that doesn’t match what you have believed, ask for His help in distinguishing His truth from lies. Talk to God about sexual intimacy. Pray about your thoughts and feelings about sex—and then be sure you make some time to listen as well.

Other Resources

Several books and blog posts stand out to me as good introductions into the experience of learning God’s truth about sexual intimacy.

Push Out the Lies

Once you know God’s truth, you can begin to silence the lies.

Some time when you’re away from your husband and the bedroom, write down the words of truth that you have learned:

  • I am beautiful.
  • I am lovable.
  • My husband wants me for my whole self.
  • Sex is for me, too.
  • Sex is beautiful, joyous, and holy within marriage.
  • I am a godly wife if I want sex.
  • Arousal usually precedes desire—and if I’m not feeling like it, I can still enjoy doing it.
  • Men need sex because it is how they feel most emotionally connected to their wives.
  • Sex is part of what holds a marriage together. Sometimes it is the path to making other things better.
  • My husband’s interest in a new sexual activity is because he craves adventure and wants it with me.
  • My husband needs sex—and when he is most unlovable, he needs love most.
  • I deserve sex.
  • When I experience desire and arousal with my husband, it is because he is my husband and my desire is God’s design.
  • Sex is a gift and privilege.

Write out these truths and the others you learn. Write them in a journal. Write them on post-it notes that you can leave in places you will see them.

Read these truths every day, praying for God to help you understand them.

Practice saying these truths—in your head and out loud. Get used to saying them so they become automatic. When a lie comes into your head during sex (or when you’re thinking about it sometime), as soon as you recognize that’s what’s happening, take a deep breath, and say one of the truths. Say it, over and over, until you believe it. Every time a lie shouts to you, invite the truth in instead.

You push the lies out by replacing them with the truth.

Speak God’s truth. Over and over. Say the words of truth aloud, even when you don’t yet believe them. Your ears need to hear them just as much as your mouth needs to say them.

God’s truth about sex and sexuality in marriage is so wondrous. Silence the lies so you can delight in the truth.

Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
~ 1 Corinthians 13:6

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20 Thoughts on “Silence the Lies

  1. I made a special binder and focused my study time with God to this subject. It was a study that lasted for 1 year. By the end of the year there was the same God, for He changes not. Same Word, His Word is trustable and true. Different wife!!

    • Wow! Can you share how you used your binder?

      • Of course, I’d be honoured!! However, Darrell is coming into town this very minute; haven’t seen him in 2 weeks and I get him for 10 whole days while he’s on vacation! (kids better get their headphones out that’s all I’ve got to say) 😉

        Also, it’s been a few years since I took that journey and I’d like to have a little time to refresh my memory, just so that it sounds cohesive. And also so I’m not coming back on for the next few days saying, “Oh, and then you do this.” Or, “Sorry, I forgot that part, and did I mention?”

        I just need a couple of days alone with my man – then I’ll be back! Thanks again for the opportunity Chris!

  2. Convicted by your previous post, “Do Your Feelings Control Your Marriage?”, I’ve spent the better part of the day setting up a blog where I hope to journal as I am “transformed by the renewing of my mind”. Too often, I still allow MY thoughts to affect my behavior. Although I have grown in this area, it’s just not consistent enough. There is much work for the Lord to do!

    • That will be a wonderful way to chronicle your journey and learn about yourself while you inspire others. May God bless your transformation. I look forward to reading!

  3. Great post! If we could all silence the lies we would have such better marriages. And lives…
    I love the idea of writing down the truth, even (especially) if we don’t feel or live it.

  4. My darling wife is a children’s pastor and she does a great object lesson called “The Truth About Lies.” Briefly, there are a bunch of helium balloons with common lies we believe on them that obscure one yellow balloon with a smile and “God” written on it. There’s a skit that goes along with it, in which basically, one by one, the lies get popped with the truth of the Word, revealing the Father. It’s powerful.

  5. My 365 Day Journey was a trip I took years ago. It began when I was sick of us arguing over sex. My first step was to actively initiate sex every day for 1 year. Coupled with that action were the verses that God told me to study. There were 11 groupings of verses. Which God gave me in a specific order to read and write. For instance, the first grouping was from Deuteronomy 8. I would read verses 1 through 17 then I would focus on the specific verse which I had been shown to write out and commit to memory. In this case it was usually verses 2-3, but not always, it depended on God.

    It wasn’t as cohesive as 5 minutes or 1 hour each day or the first 3 groupings on Monday the next on Tuesday. I made the list of the verses God told me to and He guided the length of journey each day. But I never deviated from the order He gave.

    I also had a book which I used to journal everything, (the ones you get from Staples that have 400 pages) I filled two of them. Sometimes the study time would consist of reading and writing memory verses. Sometimes it was typing on the keyboard from reference and research material, then printed and placed in the binder. Because I was writing and studying out of 2 different venues (the binder and the writing book) I wanted them to be able to be paired up at a later date, in the event I ever wanted to reference them. So if I was starting this today, the date would have read, Sat Jun 21/14 (1/365). Counting off was important; I think I needed a reminder to stick with it b/c it was God who told me 1 year and not to stop until that year was done.

    The core verses were written in the front of each binder and book b/c sometimes He took me to other verses. But each day I always started with the core ones.

    Before too long I started to see patterns of subjects forming. There was submission, spiritual warfare, love, faith, joy, flesh/spirit. I used dividers to cross reference each of the subjects.

    I’ve shared this with lots of other women as well: When you are memorizing God’s word don’t think it’s Unspiritual to be particular about the materials you use. For instance I like to write with gel pens for colour and Bic for blue and only use a particular kind of binder paper (it’s a thick heavy one). I found out this matters. These were the materials that I showed up with to be ready for ‘class’ – it invoked a sense of diligence and dedication to the plan that God invited me to journey with Him. It was a reminder to myself that this change and growth in me was not only important to God but necessary for my marriage.

    Finally, God showed me that I needed to take this study as seriously as any other type of continuing education and He equated it to going to university. This journey was not to change my husband or any of his faults. It was about me; changing me and me alone.

  6. What an amazing journey, Robyn. Your intention in taking this journey is such an inspiration. For so many years, I figured that if our sex life was a problem, God would fix it for us. Immersion in God’s word and a stronger marriage are so much better than fights about sex. Bless you for sharing this.

  7. “I figured that if our sex life was a problem, God would fix it for us.” I know, right! Just magically – like the ‘genie’ He is; He would wave His magic finger and have our marriage magically fix itself.

    (did I use the word MAGICALLY enough to make my point LOL)

    • Yup, that’s exactly what I figured it would be like. God would look down at us and think, “Hmm, that marriage could use a little mojo.” He would wave His magic wand, and the next morning I would wake up, washed with desire and arousal for my husband and we would live happily ever after. I didn’t mind the idea of transformation, as long as I didn’t have to do any work for it.

      • “I didn’t mind the idea of transformation, as long as I didn’t have to do any work for it.” <—- this is so true, not just in marriage but all areas. I know when we were trying to conceive, it was no different. I was angry at God b/c if He wasn't going to bless us with more children then I wanted Him to take the desire away from me … just "change" me. Hmmmm – we know better now don't we; God's not about making it easier for us – but about growing and maturing us.

  8. Tina on June 22, 2014 at 7:38 pm said:

    Thanks for your post. I can relate to the lies you wrote because they are in my mind too. I struggle to replace them with the opposite. Your list will be so helpful!

  9. Pingback: A 365 Day Journey | The Forgiven Wife

  10. Pingback: How to Have Sex When You Don’t Really Feel Like It | The Forgiven Wife

  11. Pingback: He Only Wants Me for Sex | The Forgiven Wife

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