His Needs, Her Needs, Our Needs

What does the condition of your marital relationship have to do with prayer?

1 Peter 3:7, "Likewise you husbands, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered."

"His Needs, Her Needs, Our Needs"

[This is the fourth transcript of an eight cassette tape series titled "Love For A Lifetime", given by Pastor David T. Moore of Palm Desert Calvary Chapel, Palm Desert, CA. "This awesome cassette series on how to make a marriage really work, maintaining love for a lifetime, is available online at: http://www.mooreonlife.com , cost, $38.95--and worth every penny of it!] "Falling in love is such a funny thing, it's really difficult to describe. You may remember or you may have been asked at one time or another somewhere in a conversation where someone finally asked that very difficult question, "How do you know when you're in love?" "How do you know when this is the right person?" And the number one answer is: "You just know." That's the most ridiculous answer in the world, isn't it?--"You just know." I remember asking Mom and Dad, "How do you know this is the right person to spend your life with?" "You just know." Now others have asked me, "How do you know this is the person...?" "You just know." It's a real difficult thing to describe what falling in love is all about. How many of you believe in love at first sight? Let's find out. Raise your hands if you believe that. This is not a trick question. It's O.K. Do you know that 40 percent of Americans believe in love at first sight as an absolute issue. And another twenty eight percent believe that it probably happens. That means that 68 percent or 7 out of 10 Americans really do believe in love at first sight.

Now while some believe in love at first sight, I believe in taking a second look. How about you? And a second look is certainly worthwhile. You know there's nothing really remarkable about love at first sight. It's people who can look at each other year after year after year and still love each other, now that's remarkable. Love at first sight can't possibly be anything other than puppy-love, and everybody knows that puppy-love leads to what?--a dog's life. Everybody knows that. And others talk about love being blind. And that may be true, but many times that blind love enters into marriage, and marriage is the great eye-opener. Somebody said to me last week as we left, they said, "You know, marriage is an institution, and love is blind, so marriage must be an institution for the blind." Maybe some truth to that too.

Do you see, the issue is that nobody marries to be miserable. Everybody starts out with stars in their eyes and hopes and dreams this is going to be perfect. But sooner or later the hopes begin to wobble and the dreams begin to die. And we begin to wonder if we were really ever in love in the first place or not. That's what this series has been all about, "Love For A Lifetime." Love does not have to grow shallow and thin and die. It doesn't have to do that. Norm Crosby has a great definition of love. Norm said this, "Teenagers don't know what love is. They have mixed up ideas. They go for a drive, boy runs out of gas, they smooch a little, and the girl says she loves him. That isn't love. Love is when you've been married twenty-five years, you're smooching in your living room, he runs out of gas, and she still loves him anyway. That's love!" You know there was a recent Time magazine article that talked about love and the basic thesis of this article was that "Love was a chemical reaction." This article described the fact that 'love is cooked up in the chemical laboratory of your brain.' And that 'love is literally something that you fall into and fall out of as a chemical reaction to the hormones flowing through your body. "And at best" this article said, "it lasts only two years." Well I don't know if that's true or not, it's funny how scientists try to put things like love in a laboratory. That doesn't always work too well. But I do believe that a successful marriage requires "falling in love with the same person over and over and over again." The question is, "Is that possible?" And if so, how can it be done? Well that's the focus of this session and our next session together. We've said so far, basically, if I can sum up four weeks in three sentences, we've said, "If love is to last a lifetime, it must be other-centered. If you're going into a relationship self-centered--meet my needs, take care of me--love will die, I can promise you that. We saw also from Ephesians 5, love must be mutually submissive--two people coming to one another, to meet one another's needs, mutually submissive to each other. Leaving last week another person said, "You know, the husband is the head of the home." And I said, "Well, that's what the Bible says. And then the wife said, "And yeah, the wife is the neck and the husband's going nowhere without the neck." (And there's probably good balance there.) Mutually submissive, and then the third, that we must respect one another. In 1 Peter 3:7 it says, "Husbands in the same way be considerate with your wife as you live with her, and treat her with respect." In Ephesians 5:33 is says, "Wives must respect their husbands." And this concept of mutual respect is absolutely essential if love is to continue to grow. But what of the things that we're to respect? Well that's what we talk about this week and next--the things that we absolutely must respect.

The first thing that we really must respect is, we both should respect our mutual needs. There are your needs, there are my needs, there are our needs. And this must be respected. And so the first place to start in terms of respecting one another is to respect our mutual needs. Now the first mutual need that we have--is we need spiritual fulfillment. That is a necessary element and ingredient of your life. I'll tell you why. We are three-dimensional beings. You're made up of a body, soul and spirit. You see we are spiritual beings living in physical bodies, and God intended us to become one together. That's what the book of Genesis says, that's what Jesus Christ said, "Man shall leave his father and mother, cleave to his wife, and they shall become one." That's his intention. We've said that we are relational beings and that relationships are really the only things that fulfill us. And so God intended us to enter into one relationship where we would experience a oneness. And true oneness requires the bonding of all three aspects of your being. It requires the bonding of your bodies, the bonding of your souls, and the bonding of your spirits. You see the bonding of your body occurs in marriage through physical touching and sex. The bonding of your souls occurs through emotional and relational experiences and interaction. And the bonding of your spirits comes only through a shared faith in spiritual experiences. And the unfortunate thing is that many people chose to have a relationship that is only one-dimensional or two-dimensional, when God created you to have a three- dimensional relationship, where you are connecting in a oneness--body, soul and spirit. [i.e. 1. physical/sexual bonding. 2. spirit-in-man emotional/relational bonding. 3. Spirit-plane bonding brought on by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. This level is only achieved by born-again Christians. That is why the Bible cautions against a believer marrying an unbeliever.] And your relationship will never be complete until there is a oneness in all three areas. And the most neglected area is that spiritual dimension. And if you have a one or two-dimensional relationship, without including that spiritual relationship--that spiritual bonding--your relationship will always have a limp. That's why the Bible is so clear about husbands and wives sharing the same faith. Take a look at 2 Corinthians chapter six, verse 14 & 15. It says, "Do not be yoked together with unbelievers." Context is marriage, "for what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? What fellowship can light have with darkness? What harmony is there between Christ and Belial?" What does a believer have in common with an unbeliever? You see, if one is spiritually dead there can never be a bonding there. That means at best, you can only have a two-dimensional relationship. That means that Christian young people ought not to be dating non-Christian young people, because you can only have a two-dimensional relationship. And it really does mean too that Christians should not marry a non-Christian, because the best you can ever have is a two-dimensional relationship. And God created you for oneness in the totality of your being. Now some of you today are married to an unbeliever. Well does that mean you should dump them and go find a Christian? No! Does that mean you should dump 'em and go find a Christian? NO! One more time--should you dump 'em and go find a Christian? NO!! And look at 1 Corinthians 7, verse 12 and I'll show you why. It says, "If any brother has a wife who is not a believer and she is willing to live with him, he must not divorce her." A spiritual incompatibility is never a justification for divorce, never. "And if the woman has a husband who is not a believer and he's willing to live with her, she must not divorce him." Verse 15, "But if the unbeliever leaves, let him [or her] do so, the believing man or woman is not bound under such circumstances, God has called us to peace." He's saying "Don't kill yourself if the unbeliever says, 'I'm through, I want nothing to do with you because of your faith' and they walk away. Verse 16, "How do you know, wife, whether you will save your husband? Or, how do you know husband, whether you will save your wife? Nevertheless, each of us should retain the place in life the Lord's assigned to him, to which God has called him. This is the rule I lay down for the churches." So the point is simply this, yes we do need a spiritual compatibility and there should be a bonding of our spirits, but more importantly, God wants us to stay in the relationship in which we find ourselves, even if it is with an unbeliever, because you may be the bridge He builds to the spirit of that person, and which ultimately grants that person spiritual life. A couple of years ago a lady came into my office, and she described her non-believing husband and decided that she was going to leave him. He was an unbeliever and pretty insensitive, and she was looking for my stamp of approval, I think. And I just said, "You know, you'll never get God's stamp of approval in this kind of thing because He's called you to stay with him. Now I understand if you're involved with a man who is physically abusive and your life is threatened, then you need to get out of that situation. We're talking here about just the difficulty of getting along with somebody who does not have that three-dimensional relationship. And I just shared with her. I said, "You know, his eternal state is riding upon you. You're probably the only bridge to spiritual life for this man. And if there is any way possible for you to stay with him, that's God's desire." And it was about a year or so later that he did come to a personal faith in Christ. And just recently she reminded me of the conversation and she said, "Isn't it wonderful that we managed to connect and I was able to stay, and now he's a believer, and our marriage is really growing. See, they're experiencing now a three-dimensional relationship. And see that's God's desire for you. It says in 1 Peter 3:1, it says, "Wives in the same way be submissive to your husbands, and if any of them do not believe the Word..." which means they are not Christians "...that they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives." So this is an important thing.

Now if you're both believers, the point is, keep an eye on the spiritual. Why in the world would two believers be content with a two-dimensional relationship? That really doesn't make any sense. God wants you to have a bonding in your body, your soul and your spirit. Look at Joshua 1:8. It says, "Do not let the book of the Law depart from your mouth. Meditate on it day and night, so that when you have done everything written in it, then you will be prosperous and successful." You see, in your marriage relationship its says that--the book of the Law, the words of the Lord--should never depart from your mouth. That means as a couple you ought to talk about spiritual things every once in a while. And it says that you should meditate on them day and night. It means you ought to be thinking about spiritual things every once in a while--investing in the things that are eternal, you see. "And be careful to do" means that you ought to be applying spiritual truth to your life and to your relationship. And when you're doing those three things there is a bonding of oneness in that spiritual part of your relationship which adds a three-dimensional aspect to your relationship and then it says that you will be--what?--"prosperous and successful." You can honestly say that the level of your prosperity and success in your relationship is riding upon your understanding of the need for a spiritual bonding. "Dave, how do you do that?" It's really simple. Read some verses together. Attend church together. Have a ministry together. Listen to some tapes together. You ought to pray every single day [together]. The great thing about praying as a couple is that you can say things when you're praying that are difficult to say in person. You understand? I mean, in our younger years of marriage I had a difficult time coming to Sonya and saying "You know, I was a real jerk. Forgive me", you know. Now it shouldn't be hard, but it is. You know I don't know why it is for a guy, but you know, we're mostly brain-dead. It's difficult for a guy. But I found that when we prayed together at the end of every single day--the last thing that we would do, would be to take one-another's hand and we'd begin to pray--I found it very easy when praying to say, "and Lord I was really a creep today, forgive me. I'm sorry for the things that I said and the insensitivity, just forgive me." Well, two things are happening. One is I'm getting my act together with God. The other thing that's happening, she's listening, and it's a whole lot easier to say it in prayer than to say it face to face. And you know what else? She can't interrupt. She can't go "Yeah, you were a real creep, you insensitive good for nothing--." See she can't interrupt. And so this is a great thing, it adds a dimension to your life that you must have. And so we have mutual needs, and one of them is that we have a need for a spiritual fulfillment.

We have a second need that we share in common. And that is that we have a need for emotional fulfillment. Look at 1 Corinthians 7, verses 3 & 4. (I think they're in the middle of a paragraph that's printed for you. Because we'll look at the rest of the verses later.) Verse 3 says this, "The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife and likewise the wife to her husband. The wife's body does not belong to her alone but also to her husband. And in the same way the husband's body does not belong to him alone but also to his wife." Those verses there are talking about meeting one another's needs. About putting the other person's list of needs as more important than your own. It's inverting that natural tendency for me to meet my needs, you see, but it's meeting that person's needs so that they can be emotionally fulfilled. Here's what I mean by this. Everyone has an emotional tank. I have one, you have one, your children have one. One of the keys to keeping your children growing healthy, normal and responsive is to continually be filling their emotional tank. And one of the secrets to staying in love is keeping that emotional tank full. And that tank can only be filled by someone else. I can't fill my own emotional tank. It can also be drained by someone else. But we all have this emotional tank. And love burns on the emotional fuel stored within our tanks. Getting the picture? Love burns brightly when our emotional tanks are full, no one can run on empty. All of our marital problems reflect an empty emotional tank. And most of our marital misunderstandings are due to a failure of understanding how we fill our mate's emotional tank. When our tanks are empty emotionally, we instinctively seek someone who will fill it. It always happens. That's why when the love begins to flicker in the relationship, when two people begin to grow apart, in different lives, they begin to seek out people to talk to, and people to interact with, so their emotional tank can be filled. And I'll tell you this, every single affair is ultimately the result of an empty emotional tank. That ought to be a great motivation for us to understand. We must keep our mate's emotional tank full, and realize that when their emotional tank is emptying, that they are going to be seeking somewhere to have that tank filled. Now we're not talking about a mad passion for sex here, we're talking about a basic emotional need. Now unfortunately, men and women have their emotional tanks filled in different ways. Doesn't that figure? I mean, we're different in every other way, so I guess it shouldn't surprise us. But it would be really nice if on this one we both had our emotional tanks filled the same way, but we don't. We fill another's emotional tanks by meeting their basic needs. And the basic needs of a man and the basic needs of a woman are very, very different. But each of us are responsible to set out to meet the needs of that other person, to fill their tank. And when we fill their emotional tank we add stability and love to our relationships. And every time we are insensitive to their basic needs, we drain their emotional tank. So you can make deposits in the soul of that other person, which fills their tank and keeps love burning. But how in the world do you do that? That's the focus of the rest of this session and our next. We're going to look at the five basic needs of a man, and the five basic needs of a woman. And this morning we're only going to look at one of them. Now just about every marriage book out there that's ever been written has a list of the basic needs of a man, the basic needs of a woman--but I'll tell you, I read dozens of books and the best list I've ever seen is from a guy named Willard Harley in the book "His Needs, Her Needs." And if you're looking for something to read this week that will help you on some of the ideas we're going to talk about, that's a great book--"His Needs, Her Needs". [You might try clicking on http://www.amazon.com and seeing if they have it.] But let's talk about the number one need that he identifies for women.

The number one need that men need to respect, because God called us to respect one another, and God called us to meet one another's needs and all of that--so here it is: He must respect her need for affection. [Websters: Affection: tender attachment.] write that one down. Guys, I know your hand is going to be quivering as you write, but just write it down--respect her need for affection. Now, it is the cement of a relationship for a woman. Affection is the cement of a relationship for a woman. And men need to understand how strongly women need affirmation that comes from affection. For the typical wife there can never be enough of it in the affection arena. Now affection comes far more natural for a woman than it does for a man, you guys all know that, I realize. They just instinctively are more affectionate than men. Guys, you need to do that! I mean, you need to be thinking about building an environment where affection is part of life. You guys often wonder why there is less passion after the marriage than before the marriage. The answer is really simple guys, men are generally more affectionate before the marriage when they're dating. And after the wedding he tends to think "Romantic stuff is impractical, unnecessary and expensive." [But divorce can be more expensive!] The truth is, it's essential. The man who says, "I'm just not the affectionate type" while reaching for his wife's body to gratify his own sexual desires is like the salesman who tries to close a deal by saying "Look, I'm not the friendly type, sign here you creep, I've got another appointment waiting." It is the cement of a relationship for a woman. It is not sex or foreplay--write that one down guys. Affection has nothing to do with it. You see, there's a third thing for you to jot down about this, it is an environment of affirmation, appreciation--that's what this affection thing is. It's an environment you create. Most guys tend to think of it in terms of an event. "Hey, I sent you flowers three weeks ago, come on, what do you want this week?" It's not an event, it's an environment that you create, and guys, God has called us to respect the woman's need for us to create an environment of affection for her. And so, how do you affirm her and how do you appreciate her and how do you cultivate an environment [of affection]? Well, one thing you ought to do is ask her. Just ask her, "What are the things that I can do that are communicating to you that I'm thinking of you, that you mean the world to me, that I really do love you--what are those things?" And make a list and take good notes, guys. And write it into your day-timer and put it into your computer or whatever it is that can constantly spark and remind you that you need to be cultivating an environment of affection. It can be nearly anything that says, "I'm thinking of you, you mean the world to me." Write her notes, send her flowers, hold her hand, invite her to dinner, call her for no reason, ask her to take a walk--with you. Give her a back-rub, give her a foot massage, bring home token little gifts. Guys, go shopping with her. I know that's the hardest thing in the world for a guy, isn't it gentlemen? I mean, ladies, if he goes shopping with you, this is the ultimate expression of love. He would rather be taken into the back alley and beaten up than go shopping with you. Because, you remember the differences in your brain. He goes to shop to buy something. You go to shop. And so he finds himself wandering through different stores, through different departments, and all over the place, and he's in emotional pain. But guys, if you really want to score points, go shopping with her. In fact, if you really want to score big points, invite her, "Would you like to go shopping?" Am I right, ladies? Raise your hand if I'm right about this ladies. See guys? It's an environment. There are two things in the environment that are very important. Hug her. You see, when a man hugs a wife it sends a powerful message. Women love to hug. Do you know women in every culture--in every culture of the world, love to hug and be hugged? They hug each other, they hug their children, they hug their animals, they hug stuffed animals, they hug their pillows, they're hugging--hugging--hugging--hugging. Now the guy who says, "I'm not the hugging type" had better get a grip on reality. You cultivate an environment of affection when you are regularly hugging your wife. In fact, women need eight to twelve significant hugs a day to stay healthy. You fill her tank when you hug her. And guys, you ought to be hugging her, because hugs say "I care for you", it says "You're important to me", it says, "I'll protect you", it says "I'm proud of you" and it says " I want to be close to you"--all those things are conveyed in one simple little hug. [Remember from a previous session, pastor Moore said that 55 percent of our significant communication is through non-verbal body language? Hugging is powerful affirmative body language.] So hug her. And kiss her.

Kissing is very important to a woman. You know German researchers recently studied the effects of a morning kiss on people. It's really an interesting study. They found the secret to a long and successful life was a morning kiss. A team of psychologists and physicians and insurance companies teamed up to do this research project, and they found the key to a longer, happier, healthier and wealthier life for a man is found in one single act, kissing in the morning. So not only is it important to her, guys, it's important to you. These German researchers found that men who kiss their wives every morning have fewer automobile accidents on the way to work. They found that good morning kissers missed less work because of sickness than non-kissers. You know why? Kissing is good for you physically. Because when you kiss you exchange benign bacteria in the siliva which helps boost and build your immune system. It's good for you! And don't tell my teenage daughters that, but it is good for you. Do you know that, according to their study, men who kiss every single morning earn twenty to thirty percent more money. How can that be? Well, one doctor said it's because a husband who kisses his wife every morning begins his day with a positive attitude. Now I don't know if that's true or not, but they also found that every morning kisser lives, on an average, five years longer than men who were stingy with their kisses. Guys, kiss her. Everybody wins when you kiss her. Respect her need for affection. It's the cement of the relationship, it isn't foreplay or sex. It's an environment of affirmation and appreciation. That's her # 1 need.

And ladies, his # 1 need, this will be no surprise to any lady here--respect his need for sexual fulfillment. Whereas a woman's # 1 need to fulfill her emotional tank is an environment of appreciation, the # 1 need for filling that man's emotional tank is the sexual union with his wife. Men need a frequent sex life. Look at 1 Corinthians 7, verse 2. It says, "But since there is so much immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband. The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife and likewise the wife to her husband. The wife's body does not belong to her alone, but also to her husband. The same way a husband's body does not belong to him alone, but also to his wife. Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent for a time so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again, so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of control." Now right here from the words of Scripture is the affirmation and the encouragement of a sexual union that is frequently engaged in by a husband and wife. It says here that sexual fulfillment at home helps prevent a wandering spouse. It's absolutely true. Now I don't think it's a guarantee, but you see when his emotional tank is full, he doesn't go elsewhere to have it filled. It also says that a sexual union is very very important. It's important for fulfillment. You see, some have said that sex is only for procreation. That's not what these verses are saying. So who are you going to believe, the Bible or somebody else? It also says that it should never be interrupted. It should never be withheld as punishment or offered as a reward. This sexual union is so important that nothing should interrupt it except--what does it say here?--a season of prayer, literally. It says, "a short time of prayer." You know, like "Thanks God for the great day, Amen." I mean that's the idea here. Our primary obligation is to please our partner, not to please ourselves.

That [also] means that a guy should never force her into any activity that she is not interested in or comfortable with. He should never force himself upon her. And that she should never withhold from--you see that, ladies, is his need. Just as you need affection he needs a frequent sexual response from you. He needs it. You can see the power of this need demonstrated in our society by the insane behavior of grown up adult rational men. I mean, think about the men you know who have given up successful careers for a fling with a woman. And whenever I see that happen, I always think, "How stupid this is." Bank presidents who give up their presidency and pastors who give up successful ministries and flourishing churches to pursue a woman. But what it says to us is that this drive for sex literally unravels the rational thinking of a male if that need is not met. Women, it is that important. I know his frequency for desire is much higher than a woman's. I'll never forget the day that, after I had performed a wedding on one week, a couple of weeks later I was standing at the door in another church, and as the people were leaving and the kids were leaving. And this couple I married two weeks earlier walked out and they were just back from their honeymoon and I shook hands and said, "Hey, how are you doing? Did you have a great time?" And they both looked at me with this look that said, "Wrong question." And I said, "Oh, well, it only gets better, you know. Keep on keepin' on." And this gal started to cry and she leaned forward and she said, "Dave, I married an animal." Now I tried not to laugh. And I explained to her that for her, quality is important, for him quantity is important. I also explained that his pawing at her wasn't because he turned into some lusting monster. That his sexual advances were due to a powerful need in his life. And that while she is a whole lot like an iron, it takes her awhile to warm up, he is a whole lot more like a light bulb--boom--he's ready. That seemed to help a little bit. Men need a frequent sex life, and men need a fulfilling sex life. Solomon acknowledged this in the words to his son. Proverb chapter 5. There not printed for you, but let me read them to you. This is that father-son talk, you know, where Dad's going to explain the birds and bees to his kid. Do you remember that talk in your life? I do. I was in the seventh grade. My Dad went through all this stuff, every technical term in the book. I had no clue what he was talking about. And when he was finished I went, "Ah-huh, got it Dad, thanks." You know how that is. It says, "Son, drink water from your own cistern." You can bet that boy said "Huh?" You know, 'running water from your own well' it says. Right Dad. "Should your streams overflow in the streets--your streams of water in public squares?" Excuse me? "Let them be yours alone, never to be shared with a stranger." Now you can bet this kid has no clue what Dad's talking about. Then it says, "May your fountain be blessed." O.K. "And rejoice in the wife of your youth." Oh, now we're starting to make some sense. And you can tell that Solomon finally says, "O.K., let me cut it straight." Verse 19, "As a loving doe and a graceful deer, let her breasts satisfy you at all times, may you ever be captivated by her love." There are four words there that describe what this sexual relationship means. It means that it will be blessed. The word is happy, that you're to rejoice in it. The word means to brighten up. It says, "...may her breasts satisfy you." The word means to be intoxicated. And "that you always be captivated by her love", which means consistently and perpetually as prisoner of her love. You see, that's the fulfillment that the sex life brings for a man into that relationship. And of course it can for the woman too. But primarily this is a man's # 1 need. Our son came home after sex education at school--now we've been through all that with him. We've shown him the pictures and done the whole thing, because we didn't want him to hear it, you know, at school--and when he came home after his sex ed class, you know I said, "Hey, how was it Tyson? You learn anything new?" "Nope, you guys taught me everything I need to know." "Well, good!" "Except for one thing. You never told me you do this for fun!" He goes, "That's sick!" Well you understand where he's coming from. I mean, a boy's first dilemma is when he likes girls more than frogs and dogs and doesn't know why. That's his first dilemma. But the point is that, ladies, he needs enthusiastic participation. It's good for you to be the aggressor once in a while. He gets tired of chasing you. Chase him. It does wonders for him when you chase him. Play the seductress with him. It's a great thing to add dimension and life to that relationship. You can do that. An 80 year old guy went in for a checkup, and after the checkup the doctor said, "You know you're in great shape. You, you don't have anything wrong with you. You might live forever. How old was your father when he died?" The 80 year old just said, "Did I say he was dead?" "You mean to tell me your father's still alive? How old was your grandfather when he died?" "Did I say he was dead?" And the astonished doctor said, "You mean to tell me you're 80 years old and your father and grandfather are still alive?" The guy said, "Yes, and my grandfather is 126 years old and he's getting married for the first time next week." The doctor scratched his head and said, "Why in the world would he want to get married after 126 years of being a bachelor?" The man said, "Did I say he wanted to get married?" Women need an environment where they are emotionally fulfilled by affection. Men need an environment where they are emotionally fulfilled by that sexual union. When the two of you come together understanding the difference in those needs, that's when the marriage begins to click. I don't know if you ever saw the film "Milk Money." Interesting little film. Not exactly moral [but very tame by today's standards--PG-13]. But three 12 year old little boys decided to use their milk money to hire Melanie Griffith, a professional in the sex arena, to answer sex related questions. Their number one question was this, "Is there a place on a girl where you can touch her and drive her crazy?" She told them, "No." And they were very disappointed. But as the film continued, she reformed her ways, cultivated a friendship with the three boys as well as the father of one of them. It's gonna be one of those happily ever after stories. And at the very closing scene Melanie Griffith looks at these little guys and she says, "Hey boys, there really is a place you can touch a woman and drive her crazy." And of course their ears perked up and they lit up and they leaned forward and they're ready for the answer, and she said, "It's right here", pointing to her heart. That is really good advice. Guys, you touch her heart, you fill her tank--and feelings of affection and romance are the key to a woman's arousal. And affection is the environment of marriage and sex then the special event. And when both of us understand that, we take a gigantic step towards having a love for a lifetime.


Prayer: "Oh Lord we bow before you this morning, and we have to say thank you for the wonderful way that you have created us. It really is amazing how you put us together. Father, I pray that you will help us as men and women to understand the different needs that we have and that we would respect those needs, and fulfill them. Give us the ability and desire to fill one another's emotional tanks. And Lord I also pray that you'll help us to understand our need for a three-dimensional relationship. We as men typically ignore the spiritual dimension, even when we focus on the other two. And God I pray that you would move in our hearts to help us to see how very important it is. And guys, with your heads down, and ladies, as we close in prayer, maybe today you need to confess before your Lord that you haven't been filling your mate's emotional tank. Maybe you need to ask him to forgive you. Maybe there hasn't been a spiritual dynamic, guys. And if there hasn't, you need to add that. You need to be the aggressor of cultivating a spiritual dimension to your life, because she really can't. Not that she's incapable, but you'll perceive it as nagging if she does, so she doesn't. You initiate it. Would be a great thing to talk about [with her] this afternoon, or tonight. Commit yourselves, guys, to pray at the end of every single day with her. It may feel a little awkward at first, may not even know what to say. That's alright. Prayer is just talking to God, telling him exactly what you think, exactly what you feel. If it's a five-second prayer, that's alright. It's a great start. And most importantly, if you're here with us today and never entered into a personal relationship with Christ, the best you can ever have is a two-dimensional relationship with someone else. God's presence in your life adds that third dimension. He brings real oneness and fulfillment. And so if you've never invited him into your life, that's the first place to start, and every Sunday morning we give people an opportunity to do this. If you need to come alive spiritually, right now where you sit, you can ask him to come into your life. Ask him to forgive you. He will. He'll give you a sensitivity that you've never had before. And if that's what you need today, why don't you pray a simple prayer like this, "Lord, thank you for loving me. Forgive me for all I've ever done that's wrong. Help me to become the person you've created me to be. Help me to fill the tanks of others. And thank you, in Jesus name, Amen.""

Your Needs, Her Needs, Our Needs (Part II)

What does the condition of your marriage relationship have to do with prayer?

1 Peter 3:7, "Likewise you husbands, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered."

"Your Needs, My Needs, Our Needs"

[This sermon is from tape 5 of an 8 cassette series titled "Love For A Lifetime", given by pastor David T. Moore of the Southwest Community Church in Palm Desert California. (P.O. Box 14444, Palm Desert, CA 92255-4444.) This transcription is a continuation of "His Needs, Her Needs, Our Needs."This awesome cassette series on how to make a marriage really work, maintaining love for a lifetime, is available online at: http://www.mooreonlife.com , cost, $38.95--and worth every penny of it!]

"Somebody gave me a book this week, a little booklet called "He Says, She Says." It was various definitions of words from a male perspective and from a female perspective. And it was really fun reading, and I would like to share some of it with you, but then I got to thinking "Now just me reading them isn't nearly as effective as if I had a gal read the gal's parts and me read the guy's parts." And many of you have asked "Is there really a Sonya? Does she exist?" And, ah, she really does exist, and so I said, "Sony, would you mind working through these definitions with me this morning? And that way people would see that you really are a human being, and, ah, we could have some fun with this." And she said she'd be happy to. Well almost she said that. So I want to introduce my wife of twenty years, Sonya. She, she really does exist. We met in a tropical fish store, twenty two years ago. And, ah, she came to visit a friend there, and I worked there. And her friend said, "Why don't you put your hand in this fish tank and feel the sea anemone, because it'll sting you and it's kind of a fun thing." And so she stuck her hand in the tank, and her friend walked out of the room, I walked in. My very first words to her were "Get your hand out of that tank!" And, ah, we were friends, and dated for about nine months, and engaged for nine months, and at the age of 21 we were married. And it's been twenty years now that we celebrated last summer. And I love her! And so, thank you for going through this with me. These are the definitions of different words, and they're typically male and typically female, and certainly don't represent our values at all, but at least it will point out the differences in men and women. The first word is "atmosphere" [Sonya] "O.K., atmosphere, a place with romantic surroundings, tables for two, candlelight and a strolling violinist." [Dave] "Atmosphere, any place with free pretzels, big screen T.V. and Monday night football." "Conversational topics. Interesting people, world affairs and social problems." "Conversational topics--sports and politics." "Daydreaming--imagining you and your man on a beach walking along the beach, and dancing under the stars." "Daydreaming--something you do while your partner has a serious conversation with you." "Delegation--asking others to do things for the benefit of your family." Delegation--asking your wife to help you find your glasses, car keys, and the remote control." "Directions--the first thing you ask for to make sure you find your way." Directions--the last thing you ever ask for, unless you're driving into a swamp." "Dressing up--Spending hours on your hair, putting on a dynamic outfit, and making sure your makeup's perfect." Dressing up--changing a T-shirt." [Sonya] I thought it was socks! "Must-see documentaries--Making of the President." Must-see documentaries--Making of a centerfold. (It's not me, this is the average man, you know). Etiquette in automobiles--thanking him for opening the door first." Etiquette in automobiles--Remembering to roll down the window before you spit." (Don't tell Tyson these.") Parenting advice to teens--Telling them you care and then guiding them with love and wisdom." Parenting advice to teens--Ask your Mom." Flattering hairdo's--Getting just the right cut and color to suit you." Flattering hairdo--Getting one hair long enough to encircle your bald spot like linguini." "Kissing--an expression of enjoyment and attraction." Kissing--first base. [Sonya] Don't tell Tyson this one either! "Listening--focussing on every word he says." Listening--paying attention until you think of something more important to say." Manners--formal and informal rules of thoughtful behaviors designed to make others in your presence feel appreciated and comfortable." Manners--Wiping your mouth after you take a swipe from the milk carton." Sharing responsibility--both parents contributing to the relationship by sharing household chores." Sharing responsibility--You leave the laundry around, she picks it up, you mess up the kitchen, she cleans the dishes, you track in dirt, she cleans the floor." Thoughtful gifts for your wife--Satin lingerie, gold, diamonds." Thoughtful gifts for your wife--A new toaster, vacuum cleaner, thigh-master." (I did get that vacuum!) (She did. Her first birthday after we were married I made the mistake of buying her a vacuum cleaner and I've never made that mistake again.)

Well, let's jump into the message. We're going to take you on a quick review. What we've been trying to do during the past several weeks in walk through a series together called "Love For A Lifetime." And this morning is our sixth session in this series, and it's really a part II of what we looked at two weeks ago [the last transcription] "His Needs, Her Needs, Our Needs." We've said all along through this entire series that men and women are very different, and most of our problems are rooted in our differences. Every cell in your body, men, is different than every cell in her body. She sees the world differently, she describes the world differently. We interact differently, we have different needs. Not only do we have individual needs, we have mutual needs. One of the mutual needs that we have is we need spiritual fulfillment. Everybody has that. Everybody in this room has a need for spiritual fulfillment. That's because we're three-dimensional beings. Every one of us are comprised of a body, soul and spirit. We are spiritual beings living in physical bodies. And God intended us to become one with one another through marriage, and true oneness requires a bonding of all three dimensions of your being--body, soul and spirit. The bonding of your bodies is done through physical touch and sex. The bonding of your souls comes through emotional and relational interaction. And the bonding of your spirits comes through a shared faith and through [shared] spiritual experiences. Now you can have a one, two or three dimensional relationship. God's hope for all of us it that we will have a three-dimensional relationship by not neglecting the spiritual dimension of your life. We ought to be praying together, we ought to be worshipping together, we ought to be growing together. We also have a second need, and that second need is a need for emotional fulfillment. You see, everyone has an emotional tank. The secret to staying in love is keeping that tank full. Now all of our marital problems reflect an empty emotional tank. Every affair is the ultimate result of an empty emotional tank. And most of our marital misunderstandings are due to our failure to understand how to fill our mate's tank. You see, we are responsible to fill that other person's tank. They can't fill it themselves, they can't empty it themselves. We all have this driving need to have this emotional tank filled. We make deposits in that person's emotional tank when we meet their needs. We make withdrawals when we ignore their needs. And the important thing about this is the fuel in that emotional tank is the fuel upon which love burns. And if love is going to last a lifetime, we must know how to fill the emotional tank of the person that we live with. Now this morning we're going to review the two first needs of a man and woman, and then focus most of our time on the next four. So all in all, we're going to look at the five basic needs of a man, the five basic needs of a woman. Now these needs are not mine, I didn't invent them. The basic needs that I'll mention to you come from a book called "His Needs, Her Needs" by Willard Harley. Now the information I'll be sharing with you is not necessarily his, but I have found these to be absolutely consistent with my experience as a pastor and as a husband and as a father, and as somebody who works with couples. These five needs, when met, fill the emotional tank, which keeps love burning. So we've got to know what they are and how to meet them. Now some of them will sound stereo-typical, some of them will sound simplistic, some of them will even sound chauvinistic. But I can tell you this, every successful marriage I know of has most of these needs things going for it, these needs being met. On the other hand, nearly every marriage I know of personally, where there has been marital strife or problems, or where the marriage has fallen apart, it was because these needs were not being acknowledged and met--the emotional tanks were empty. So that's the focus this morning.

Now two weeks ago we looked at the # 1 need of a woman, and that was the need for affection. Now a woman needs affection. It is the cement of a relationship. Men need to understand that affection is not an event, it's an environment. And we as guys are responsible to create an environment of affection. Writing her notes, sending her flowers, holding her hands, giving her that back-rub, bringing her token gifts, hugging her, kissing her, all of these kinds of things create an environment of affection. It's her # 1 need. It is the most significant way to fill her emotional tank. The # 1 need of a man, on the other hand, is sexual fulfillment. We saw from Scriptures in 1 Corinthians that God calls us to meet one another's physical, sexual needs, and that it is so important that nothing should interrupt those needs [being fulfilled] except a short season of prayer. Men need sexual fulfillment, and if affection is the cement of a relationship for a woman, then a fulfilling sexual relationship is really the cement of a relationship for a man. And so his # 1 need--sexual fulfillment, her # 1 need--affection.

Now, the # 2 need of a woman is conversation. The second most significant way to fill her emotional tank, to fuel love to burn for a lifetime is to communicate with her, to converse with her. You see women enjoy conversation simply for the sake of conversing. She needs daily conversation. If you're out of town guys, you ought to call her every single day. She needs regular consistent conversation with you. How much does she need? You're not going to like the answer. Most of the studies done from successful couples to try to discover how much personal interaction and communication is occurring during a week that causes love to grow, keep the tank full, comes in somewhere around 10 to 15 hours a week. Ooow. Now when I first began to read those studies I was very troubled. Because where in the world am I going to get 15 minutes a day, much less 15 hours a week? And yet, lest you think I'm crazy, you need to understand, as we walk through this, that many of the other needs of a man and other needs of a woman, as you begin to meet them, they also contribute to and meet this need. And 10 to 15 hours a week, when you understand the rest of the scenario, is not such an unrealistic figure. So don't allow yourself to say, "Well, I'll never make it." You see, if love is to last a lifetime, you have to fall in love with the same person over and over and over again. And that requires communication and lots of it. People fall in love as a result of the time they spend exchanging conversation and affection. So we need that much. The problem is, that after the marriage, the average couple spends 37 minutes a week in meaningful conversation. So 37 minutes a week is a long way from 10 to 15 hours. Is it any wonder then that we as Americans in our fast-paced living lead the world in divorce? We have allowed everything else to consume the time that was supposed to be devoted to the # 2 need of a woman, and our marriages fall apart. Somewhere along the line, she'll say something to you like, "You know, I miss the talks that we once had." Because before you were married, you talked for hours, right guys? Remember that? In fact, if you were to calculate it out, you probably spent somewhere between 10 to 15 hours a week winning her hand in marriage. Suddenly, when you've won the prize you think it's not necessary anymore to keep falling in love. And yet it is absolutely essential. So she misses it, so somewhere she'll say, "You know, I miss the talks we once had. Honey, let's talk." Guys, that is the signal that her emotional tank is emptying. And it needs to be replenished and refilled, and only you can do it. And if you don't she will turn to someone else, someone else to converse with. It ought to be you. The worse thing you can say guys, when she says "Honey, let's talk"--the worse thing, I mean, this is the bottom of the pit guys, when you say, "Sure! What do you want to talk about?!" Don't ever say that again. That is not a good response. Her first thought will be, "Well, if you don't know the answer to that question, then I guess we don't have anything to talk about." It wounds her spirit, and you see, that answer "Sure! What'ya want to talk about?!" reflects the male beat toward communicating for the purpose of solutions. That's the way we talk, guys, we talked about this in our communication series. But you see, women don't communicate for solutions, women communicate for sharing. They share their soul as they talk out loud. And that's why that answer is so aggravating to her. "Sure! What'ya want to talk about?!" "Come'on get to it, spit it out? I'll solve it!" It bugs her. Now let me turn the tables gentlemen, and let me illustrate to you how awful it sounds to her when you say "Sure! What'ya want to talk about?!" Let's suppose that you say to her "Honey, let's make love." And she says, "Why? Do you want to have children?" That is exactly the same answer as when you say "What'ya want to talk about?!" You see her answer is focussed on the end purpose, right? Children! And I'll bet that answer would be aggravating to most of you husbands. Am I right? You chicken-hearts?! You guys! "Oh no, wouldn't aggravate me at all." You see, he's thinking when she would say that, "I just want to be intimate with you." Well, when you say "Sure! Want'ya want to talk about?!" she's thinking "Look I don't want a discussion, I don't want to solve the world's problems, I just want to be intimate with you." Just as men find sex enjoyable for the sake of enjoyment, women find conversation enjoyable for the sake of enjoyment. And guys, it is that important to her, it is her # 2 need, and God knew that, and so in his wisdom he gave us James 1:19. James 1:19 says, "My dear brothers, make note of this. Everyone should be quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to become angry." Guys, we need to be quick to listen, slow to speak. The result is a lack of anger in our relationships. God is brilliant, he knew that was a # 2 need of a woman, so he said that to us so that we wouldn't mess up the relationships. Her # 1 need--affection, her # 2 need--conversation. His # 1 need--sexual fulfillment. His # 2 need, very interesting, look at Genesis chapter 2, verse 7. Genesis 2:7 says, "The Lord formed man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and the man became a living being." Verse 15, "Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and to take care of it." Verse 18, "Then the Lord said, 'It is not good for the man to be alone, I will make a helper suitable for him.'" Verse 21, "So the Lord caused the man to fall into a deep sleep and while he was sleeping he took one of man's ribs, closed up the place with flesh. Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib he had taken from the man and he brought her to the man, and the man said this, 'Now this is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh, she'll be called woman, for she was taken out of man.' And for this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be united to his wife and they will become one flesh." Next week we're going to look at all the theology behind this as we talk about how to affair-proof your marriage, and we talk about the bonding process and all of that. But for now I want you to notice verse 18, it says, "The Lord says that it is not good for a man to be alone. I'll make a suitable helper for him." Gentlemen, the most suitable helper for you is the woman. It was God's design, it was God's creation, it was what he knew you needed. Your # 2 need is a recreational playmate, in your wife. Your # 1 need is sexual fulfillment. Your # 2 need is a recreational playmate. You see, it's not good to be alone. And so the most suitable helper for you, the suitable completer, the most suitable fulfiller of relationships for you is that one special woman. Now let me explain this for just a moment. Before the women often do recreational things with men. You may remember that. You may remember that before you were married you'd go fishing with him, or you'd throw a football with him, or you might even stand beside his car and pass him a wrench. Or you might even lift weights with him, or any one of a hundred other things that are recreational things that you do typically before your marriage, and I think it's because instinctively, women know that this is a good relationship builder. When we went on our honeymoon, you now there was a limiting factor on finances and so forth, and so we decided that we would spend four days, because that was all we could afford, working our way down the coast of Monterray, Pacific Grove and so forth, and in that area. And then we had three days left before I had to be back at work, and so I said, "What do you want to do with those other three days, Sony?" And she said, "I don't know. What do you want to do?" And I said, "You know what I really want to do?" She said, "No. What do you really want to do?" I said, "I want to go water skiing." "Water skiing?" "Yeah." "That's not a very romantic way to spend your honeymoon." And today when I tell people "Yeah, we went water skiing on our honeymoon." People look at me like, "What a dirt-bag you are." But you see, what I didn't realize at the time, is the # 2 need of a man is for a recreational companion. And I instinctively wanted to take her water skiing, and teach her to water ski. [Roger Littlefield and his sailing-companion wife! What a close couple.] And that's what we did on my honeymoon, took her to water ski. You see that T.V shows always portray guys out in the woods, they're all alone, they're being men, you know. And they're bragging, "This is the life, no women here, it doesn't get any better than this!" Nonsense! Truth is, they'd rather have their wives along if their wives enjoyed the same things they did. I mean, think about it guys, would you rather look at Harry or your honey, you know? It's not really a contest. And God knew that. That's why he said, "Look, it's not good to be alone, I'll make a helper suitable for him." The most suitable recreational companion is your wife. And ladies, you need to understand that. You see, what happens, is that after the wedding, wives typically try to get their husbands interested in activities more to their liking, and guys don't go for that. And so, usually when that fails, the wives will encourage their husbands to continue on "and do what you do without me, it'll be O.K. I'll see you when you get home, and we'll connect later"--and they encourage them to go along and enjoy their recreational things--and it's the worst thing that you can do for your marriage. Because what happens then is he is having his # 2 need met somewhere else. Something else or someone else is filling that emotional tank, and you ought to be filling it instead. If you're doing things, guys, that she doesn't enjoy doing, quit doing 'em and do something she enjoys. When we first got married, Sonya and I, I liked to play baseball. And yet I would come into the house after working, and two nights a week grab my cleats and my glove and head on out the door and said, "See ya later." And on Saturdays, spent at the ball park. And when volleyball season came around there was two nights a week of practice, and you know, there were the games on Saturdays, so I was two nights and one day a week when I was out. And she was always gracious and she always encouraged me, but what I saw happening was that there was a growing resentment in her spirit. Because if a man only has so much time for a recreational activity, "Why in the would he rather be with those guys than with me?" [is what she's thinking.] And she was right, so I put the volleyball aside, put the baseball aside, and we started to cultivate things that we do together, and it's wonderful. And it's the way we ought to be. We're meeting--you know when you're meeting not only your second need but her second need, because you're talking. You're communicating. There's conversation. And I just want you wives to understand and appreciate that.

Right after I broke my leg I was at the hair-cutter getting my hair cut and she asked me of course, "How'd you get your leg broken?" And I said "I broke it riding dirt bikes." And she said, "Oh, my husband loves to do that." "What does he ride?" And she said, "He rides those quad-runner things." And I said, "Oh, have you ever gone with him?" She goes "Are you kidding? Get out there in the hot and the sand and the dirt and the stink. I'm not interested in that." And I said, "You know, you really ought to try it, because the # 2 need of a man is a recreational companion." And she said "# 2 need? What's his # 1 need?" And I said "Sex", and she said "Oh that figures." But the # 2 need [of a man] is [for] a recreation companion. I said, "I'll bet he's asked you to go with him, hasn't he?" She goes, "Yeah, all the time." I said "Next time he asks you to go, blow his mind and say 'I'd love to go.'" And she said, "Okay, I will." Well I went in to get my hair cut last week. Sat down. She said "You're not going to believe what happened." I said "What happened?" She said "I went quad-runner riding." I said "You did!?! "How was it?" She says, "Oh it was awful. I flipped off, rolled and crashed and all that kind of thing." And I said, "Well, there are no broken bones, so you did okay." She said, "Yeah, I did okay." I said, "What did your husband think about this?" and she said, "You would not believe this man's response. When I said I'd like to go with him you would have thought he'd won the lottery. This was the greatest thrill of his life!" And I said "See, # 2 need, a recreational companion." When I'm out doing things, and I have fun without Sonya, my first thought is "I wish Sonya was here." And so over the years we've grown to appreciate this #2 need, and so we do everything together. We water ski together, we scuba dive together, next month we're sky diving together. Now she bought the tickets, so don't blame me! But I mean those are shared experiences that produce the fertile soil in which love grows. And as my needs for a recreational companion are met the love just continues to grow, and so I just encourage you about that.

His # 1 need is sexual fulfillment, # 2 is recreational playmate. Her # 1 need is an environment of affection, her # 2 need is conversation. # 3 is transparency. Openness and honesty gives a woman a sense of security. They can't feel like you have any secrets from them. If they feel like you have secrets, even if you don't, they will sense it and have an insecurity about that relationship. I meet many men who feel like they have a need for privacy, a need for their own space, a need for their man thing. But I'll tell you what, that'll generally leave a wife feeling very uneasy. And so as she feels uneasy she'll begin to ask you questions, "Where were you? What were you doing? Who were you doing it with?" Not necessarily being mean or anything, but she has a need to know. And then he will often feel like she's prying into his private business. He'll often feel like, "You don't trust me. Why are you asking me these questions? What's the matter?" which makes her feel even more insecure. Listen, the truth is this, as a couple, God said we're supposed to be one. And if there is a oneness about us, we have no private business, because the 3rd greatest need in her life is to know you--what you're doing, and what you're feeling, and what are the things you're afraid of--all of that, transparency. When you are transparent with her, her emotional tank is filled and love grows. You've got to be honest with her. And if you're not, she'll feel insecure. One of my favorite stories isn't recorded in the Bible, but it's a great story. Adam was out three or four nights in a row, very late. Eve was becoming a little bit anxious about where he was. And so she began to ask him those questions, and you see as a man begins to withdraw and say "I need my private space" then she begins to pursue even more, which drives him even further away. And so this contest is going on "Where are you? Where've you been?" She gets very upset, and finally she says "You're running around with another woman!" which is ridiculous. And he says "Don't be ridiculous, you're the only woman on the planet!" And so they continue to quarrel and finally Adam fell asleep only to be awakened by Eve jabbing him in the side, and he woke up, "Ow! What do you think you're doing?" And she said, "I'm counting your ribs!" She needs transparency, guys. She needs to feel as though there are no secrets, and there ought not be any secrets. In fact Ephesians chapter 4, verse 15 says, "Instead of playing games" that's my translation. Instead it says, ""Speak the truth in love, grow up." Our relationships ought to be characterized by truthfulness with one another. She needs truth and transparency. You've got to tell her the truth. Even if the truth is painful, painful truth is better than insecurity that covering truth brings. If things aren't going well in business, tell her so. If you're struggling in some area of your life, tell her so. When she asks you those very difficult questions, tell her the truth. When she says, "How do you like my new hairstyle?" Tell her the truth [laughter]. Speak the truth in love. Don't lie to her and say "Oh it looks wonderful." Because you've just sent a double message, and a double message says one thing with your words and another thing with your body language--and she's perceptive, gentlemen. She will pick up upon that, and she will feel insecure. And then she will begin to play those mind games, "Well, if he's not telling me the truth about this, what else is he being untruthful to me about?" And she will begin to become more clingy, and you'll begin to withdraw even more, and both of your emotional tanks begin to drain, and it's dumb. When all that we really need to do is to fulfill the words of our Lord, and make sure that we're transparent. That mistrust gives her a deep sense of insecurity. It sends mixed signals, she has no foundation for the relationship. [i.e. Honesty, transparency builds the foundation of the relationship--it's foundational.] Jesus Christ put it very well. One of my favorite verses. I've told it to you many times, where Jesus said "Let you yes mean yes, your no mean no, and anything beyond this is evil." That's the best policy for being transparent.

# 3 need of a man. Look at Judges 14. Judges 14, verse 1. It says, "Then Sampson went down to Timna and saw a woman in Timna, one of the daughters of the Philistines. So he came back to his father and his mother and said, 'I saw a woman in Timna, one of the daughters of the Philistines, now there, get her for me as a wife.' Then his father and mother said to him, 'Is there no woman among all of our people, that you have to take a wife from the uncircumcised Philistines?' But Sampson said to his father, 'Get her for me, for she looks good to me.'" She looked good to Sampson. Now ladies, you may not like this one, but I'm gonna cut it real straight with you. The # 3 need of a man is an attractive wife. Men are visually oriented. Sampson made his decision on his wife solely on the superficial grounds of her physical appearance. Is that shallow? Yes! But is it real? Absolutely. Men are creatures of sight. A lot of times young guys now will be asking me questions about how I picked Sonya and 'How'd you know you were in love with her?' 'What kind of insights can you give me?' And I always get a kick out of that, and I tell them, "I don't have a clue man, I got lucky." Because it wasn't so much insight that caused me to pick her, it was eyesight that caused me to pick her. And then we worked out the details as we went along the way. But men need an attractive wife. Now women are different from men. See a woman can look beyond a man's physical appearance and love him for what's on the inside. Aren't you glad guys? Because you're all ugly. But it is nearly impossible for a man to appreciate a women for inner qualities alone. I love the story of the farmer who took his family to town. They hadn't been to town for years, and they went to this big department store. First time they'd ever been to a department store. And the wife was off shopping, and the father and son were tired of course now. And they sat down in front of the elevator. And they saw this rather large elderly woman waddle into the elevator. The door closed. Just moments later the doors open and this beautiful young woman walked out. And the man looked to his boy and said, "I gonna get Mom and run her through that thing!" Men are visually oriented. Now, I'm not saying that every woman should look like Sharon Stone. But every woman ought to make the most of what she has. He loved you for whatever you were when you were first married, he will continue to love you, just take care of it. You see, attractiveness is not what you have, but what you do with what you have. And an attractive woman is made, not born. Sometimes I see pictures in magazines of models on one side of the page without their makeup and on the other side of the page with their makeup and it is absolutely astounding. You look at these women on the one side and think, "Holy smoke, what are they doing there?" and then you look on the other side and say, "Well that makes sense." And then you find out it's the same person and you go "There's no way!" I'm not saying a woman should be eternally young. But getting older is no excuse for letting yourself go. And getting older is no excuse for failing to fix your hair or dressing like a bag-lady. One elderly lady here at church said, "You know I'm just as beautiful as I ever was, it just takes me a little longer to get that way." Leaving this morning, another lady said, "Youth is a work of nature, middle age is a work of art." Well, there's truth to both of those statements. But the reality is, if you don't look good, he won't look very much. And then he'll tend to notice other women, especially good looking ones. And then he'll tend to make comments about them. That's horrible for the relationship, by the way. And if he's a Christian, he'll actually feel guilty about looking. Your marriage will begin to have a limp. Husbands will be turned off, not very interested in sex. Generally won't be that affectionate, so he won't meet your # 1 need. Worse yet, he may start fantasizing about someone else when he's intimate with you, develop a mistress of the mind, very unhealthy. Worst of all he might start looking somewhere else to have his need met, so it really is an important one. Even as superficial as it sounds, it's very real. Simple test to know how you're doing, ladies. A wife's attractiveness to her husband is very easily measured by how much he wants to touch her, squeeze her, pinch her, whatever, but he will make it known to you that you look good to him. Another indicator is that when a man is pleased with his wife's appearance, he will be very enthusiastic about expressing how pleased he is with your appearance. And on the other hand, when a man has little to say it might be because he doesn't see much to talk about. And so that's the # 3 need of a man. Now let's get off of that one. And guys, quit elbowing that lady sitting next to you.

Now, fourth need of a wife--financial security. 1 Timothy chapter 5, verses 7 and 8. "Give the people these instructions too, so that no one will be open to blame. If anyone does not provide for his relatives, especially of his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever." Catch that? The financial obligation of the man to provide for his family. God knew that women have a need for financial security. They need to be able to look out on the horizon and feel secure that it's going to be O.K. The need for financial security and support is deep and very serious for a woman. And the problem is that many times we ignore that as men because you can typically function day-to-day, but she needs to function in the future. Remember just a few weeks ago we said that's why you carry a wallet, men, and she carries a purse. She's prepared for every possible thing that can come her way--you're prepared for the moment. Likewise, her fourth need is for financial security. Couples need to learn to live within their means. Especially the younger couples that are here with us this morning and the younger couples that will hear this via the radio and so forth. I really believe that the best rule of thumb for the economic success is to make sure that you live on all of the basics of life provided for from his check, not hers. I know that sounds kind of narrow minded and it sounds a little bit chauvinistic and so forth, but there's a very good reason for that, because most young couples find themselves living far beyond their means. They find themselves strapped into a lifestyle where they need both incomes just to make ends meet. And what this does within her, it creates an insecurity because she thinks things like "What if he gets hurt? What if I get sick? What if I have a child?" And it's terrible stress on the family. And so the wonderful thing to do is to plan ahead and know guys that her 4th need is financial security. That means you take care of the insurance issues and get those things in line, and that you start working toward just working off your salary. When I was first married to Sony I made a whapping $600 a month. Boy I thought I was rich. Then Sonya got a job working for a boat company and she made $800 a month. But when I got that first raise and I moved up to $650 a month, Sonya cut her hours and went down to $750. When I got the next raise and went to $700, she went down to $700. When I went up to $750, she went down to $650, and we continued to do that until she was working just the hours she was comfortable with, and we made it a point to keep our standard of living such that we could live off of my check instead of living beyond our means. The great thing about that is when children came along four years into our marriage (now I know not everybody has that kind of time span and so forth), but the great thing about it was, our financial security was in place. By that time Sonya's paycheck was going into savings or toys or something we didn't have to have to have it to live on. And she was able to make a choice. A choice of staying home or going back, but she had a choice. This gives a woman security. And young couples ought to work toward having that choice. And if his paycheck doesn't cover the basic expenses, you have four options. One option is he can work longer hours or get a second job, but that's not good for your marriage. The second option is you can use credit cards to sustain a phony standard of living until you're so deeply in debt that you don't know what you're gonna do. That's not a good solution. She can be forced to work, but that's not a good solution because those who study relationships say that most married women tell counselors that they resent working. If they're working, it's only going to absolute necessities. Now I realize when you're first married, sometimes you have to do that. And one of the ingredients that's important to understand is that you may have to do this for a time, but if she feels like "I'm gonna be trapped here forever", she is not going to feel financially secure. Maybe the two of you work very hard for a short time and work toward some common goal, but don't do that to the extent that it damages your relationship. And there is a 4th option, and that is a family can lower it's standard of living. That's the best option, live within your means. Living within your means grants financial security, which is her fourth need, which fills her emotional tank. Your marriage begins to thrive, even without the toys. So the # 1 need of a woman, affection, # 2 conversation, # 3 transparency, # 4 financial security. The # 1 need of a man is sexual fulfillment, # 2 recreational playmate, # 3 an attractive wife, # 4 is found in proverbs chapter 31, verse 10. It says, "The wife of a noble character who can find? She's worth more than rubies." O.K. here's the gal who's worth more than rubies to a guy, verse 11, "Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value." Verse 13, "She selects wool and flax and works eagerly with her hands. She's like the merchant ships bringing food from afar." "She gets up" verse 15 says "when it's still dark and provides food for her family and portions for the servant girls." Verse 19, "In her hand she holds the distaff and grasps the spindle with her fingers." Verse 21 says "when it snows she has no fear for her household, for all of them are clothed in scarlet." You now what that's about?--domestic support. That's the #4 need of a man--help on the homefront. You see, most men feel overworked. I'm not saying how they are, that's how they feel. Most guys feel like they've done everything to make the standard of living where it is. Most guys feel, they have this unspoken expectation, since they have worked so hard, that she ought to simplify their lives by cooking the meals, washing the clothes, and keeping the house picked up. I'm not saying it's right, but I'm saying it's real. I really think that guys ought to be helping out at home. The guys ought to be helping out with the chores and all that. I do all that kind of stuff around the house, I think it's healthy. But basically man feels like he needs domestic support. He needs order in his home. It's very important to him. I'm not sure why, but it's very real. And despite all the women's lib stuff and the idea of being Mr. Mom and the household chores and all that kind of thing, it still isn't very popular with most men. Most men are looking for a woman to help manage the household stuff. But guys, you oughta help. There was a great survey done recently. U.S.A. Today conducted a survey asking women if they would prefer their men to help with the household chores or to watch their man dance naked. Surprise, surprise--way into the 70 percents, the women said "clean the house, for heavens sake!" When asked if you could marry a man who is very attractive who would help with no household chores, or marry someone who is very unattractive who would help with the household chores, who would you pick? Sixty some percent said that "I'd take the ugly guy who helps with the dishes" So guys, you oughta be helping, but on the other hand ladies, it's his # 4 need. So let's go to # 5 and we'll wrap this up.

#5 need of a woman. She needs her man to be a good father. Ephesians chapter 6, verse 4 says "Fathers, do not exasperate your children, instead bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord." The responsibility of the wellbeing of the family and the children rests upon Dad. You are the trend-setter, the pace setter and that is what you ought to be fulfilling in your relationship. And it's not surprising then that women have this as their 5th need. She has a profound need for you to love her kids. If you are in a blended family and you have stepchildren, men, love those children. She needs it. You fill her emotional tank when you love those children. You fill her emotional tank when you are patient with those children. Women seem to know instinctively what psychologists are finally discovering that a man's role in the family is absolutely essential. And when a father avoids that role his wife loses her admiration for him, her tank begins to drain, the marriage begins to suffer.

The 5th need of a man--admiration. Ephesians 5:33 says the wife must respect her husband. Ladies, every man wants his wife to be proud of him. Every man needs and expects his wife to be his biggest fan. The whole world can be coming apart around him, and if you're standing in his corner, he will make it. Honest admiration of him is a great motivation. Criticism, on the other hand, will make him defensive. And yet when you admire him, when you tell him that you think he's wonderful--and you appreciate the hard work he has done, whatever it is--he will generally try to live up to your expectations and he will die trying to be for you what he ought to be anyway--because admiration inspires him.

And so we all have an emotional tank. Love is fueled by the contents of that emotional tank. It is filled for women by affection, conversation, transparency, financial support, and being a good father. It's filled for men by a fulfilling sex life, a recreational friend, an attractive wife, a domestic support and admiration.

It's wonderful the way God made us isn't it? And now our job is to fulfill the mandates of the Scriptures, and to apply to our relationships what we have learned, so that the emotional tanks are full, so love can grow and last for a lifetime."


"We bow before you this morning Father and we confess that there are times that we don't fill one another's tanks very well. For that we ask you to forgive us. And Father I pray that you would move in the hearts of the men and women here this morning and if there are areas that we have neglected and failed to meet the needs of our partner, may we begin today. Give us the courage to ask them to forgive us, and help us to start to do better. And while your heads are bowed and your eyes are closed, and we close our time this morning, I don't want you to forget the first mutual need that we have as people. And that is the need for spiritual fulfillment. You'll never really be able to fulfill those basic needs that fill the emotional tank until you've met the spiritual needs of one another. You really do need a shared faith. You really do need to pray together. You really do need to grow spiritually together. And that begins when you establish a relationship with the Creator of the Universe. God loves you. God wants to have a relationship with you. God wants to forgive you. The great news is that God wants to come into your life and help you to become the person you'll never be by yourself. And so that's why we always close our service coming back to the basic issues of life, spiritual life. If you're ready today to experience God's forgiveness, to have him come into your life and help you become the person you ought to be, to give you eternal life, then right now where you sit you can pray a simple prayer that starts you on the greatest journey of eternity. The prayer goes something like this. Just quietly between you and your Lord you can pray something like: "Lord, thank you for loving me. Forgive me for all I've ever done that's wrong. Help me to become the person that you created me to be. Help me to begin to meet the needs of that special person in my life. And thank you, in Jesus name, thanks. Amen."