Amazing Stories

baggageThis year, the biggest change in the Awaken-Love class has been asking women to share their baggage and it has been AMAZING! Our stories are a testimony of how God works. We need to share our stories – even stories of how God has healed or forgiven us in our sex lives.

In class I used to be afraid to ask women to share their baggage, but I have decided the Awaken-Love study is not just about the women in the class. It is about every friend, relative or co-worker that their lives intersect with. Awaken-Love is one step in changing the whole culture of Christians and how they interact with others about sex. Christians ought to speak truth about sex everywhere they go – with their husband, with their kids, with their friends – even with non-believers. Sharing their stories of brokenness, how  God healed and redeemed them and the freedom that they now enjoy gives others hope that God is indeed a good, good God.

So during Week 3 of class, when we talk about Lies, Baggage and Body Image Issues, I ask everyone to bring at least one piece of baggage that they can share with the class. It can be a small carry on or a giant suitcase. We don’t share specific details, but in respectful general ways, we communicate our experiences, how they affected our marriage bed, and the steps to gain freedom.

I have been astounded by the response and humbled by the trust and support that these women show each other. Every class has responded by fully entering into the process of reflecting on what their past baggage is and sharing openly. I have heard everything from…

  • innocent child play or body discovery that lead to years of shame
  • not knowing how to say no
  • non-consensual acts that led to promiscuity spinning out of control
  • not holding the lines of purity before marriage
  • struggles with porn or erotica
  • strong church messages of purity that led to inhibition
  • messages of sex being about fulfilling a husband’s needs

Every woman seems to have something and what might seem like nothing to one women can be a huge deal to another. Sometimes it is not even what happened, but it is the over reaction of a loved one that leaves a huge impact.

As teachers, we try to discern if there are next steps that need to happen. Sometimes we ask if we can lay hands on a woman and pray for her. Sometimes we sense that she needs to claim this for herself by asking God right there and then for exactly what she wants as we gather around her in agreement. Sometimes we discern that a wife needs to share with a husband and pray with him or ask a husband to pray over her.

I have seen women return to class the next week with smiles on their face and burdens lifted. Women have shared that they went home that night to have amazing conversations with loving husbands.  Women have released things that they were not supposed to carry and they have found a taste of the freedom that God desires for them.

You know, I used to say that God can heal in an instant or it can be a process. But recently I have realized that God may not always heal. Sometimes we are left with a thorn in our side like Paul and we may struggle our entire life. That thorn does not have to define us, or control us, but it can lead to a greater dependence on Christ as we live out surrender on a daily basis. We don’t have to hide our thorn from our loved ones, but we bear it with the one that fully knows us. And so, there are some intentional choices that we make as we step into living the life that God wants us to live – even when it is not easy.

My hope and desire is that the freedom these women experience as they throw away the code of silence, doesn’t just exist for them, but that it becomes a part of their testimony of God’s goodness. There are so many women that have experienced pain in their sexuality and it is time to start talking. Healing happens when you speak it out loud with another and you take it to the foot of the cross and you surrender it. God wants women to be whole.

Have you broken the code of silence about sexual baggage and what difference has it made for you?

Ruth Buezis


Dealing with my baggage had a profound impact on my marriage. I dug deep into my past, remembering the pain, and speaking it out loud to my husband. Tears flowed as I shared what for years I had brushed off as “no big deal.” Years of silence no longer held power as I reflected on how I had allowed these past experiences to affect my present. I prayed for healing, I prayed for forgiveness, I prayed for letting go and I prayed for freedom. Piece by piece, I dug up the stink, and every time God showed up.

Some of my baggage was child play – experiences which some might argue were completely innocent. But for whatever reason, these experiences had filled me with shame. Shame that had placed me in the virtual back corner of every room, just hoping to go unnoticed. No one knew -for over 40 years.  I remember while reading Kevin Leman’s Sheet Music out loud to my husband one night, he shared how many times wives share things with a counselor that they have never told their husband. I suddenly knew that he was talking about me and the floodgates opened. That night in my husband’s arms I shared about my child play experience and the shame that it filled me with. I had let silence hold so much power over my life and it was time to break down the walls.

Raised in a Christian church, as a teenager I had committed to wait until marriage to have sex, but years at college took me far from God. When I met my husband, I was still a virgin, but immediately fell head over heels in love with him. I knew that during a couple of serious relationships, he had been sexually active. So I decided if he was going to fall in love with me, I needed to have sex with him. All the years we were married, I resented him for the fact that I was not a virgin bride, and yet I was the one that had initiated sex. He never forced me or coerced me, I brought sex up. And if that wasn’t bad enough, I began questioning and wondering why he had not initiated or tried to coerce me. Did he really desire me or was I the consolation prize?

Now you need to know that I have the best husband in the world. He has never done anything to make me question whether he loves me. He has kept his eyes pure, he has always served me, loved me, encouraged me and provided for me. I let this baggage worm away in my head and question reality and truth. I had to confess my resentment to my husband, ask for forgiveness, and I had to pray to let go of my husband’s stuff.

Some things are harder to let go of than others – my husband’s past relationships – was probably the hardest. It was a choice to stop wondering, comparing and questioning whether he chose me or if I was a consolation prize. I had to consciously decide to believe my husband instead of letting my head spin wherever Satan would take it. But healing has come and it is amazing. My healing has also lead to my husband having more confidence in himself. He no longer has to tip toe around wondering if I will question and prickle and look for ulterior motives. I simply take him at his word. I believe him. And I trust him.

This renewed trust  has opened up doors that I never knew possible. I believe my husband when he adores my body and I love his eyes on me. I am confident in my own desires and know that when I share them it is an absolute thrill for him. My husband has even begun to talk about some of his baggage, because I am no longer hyper sensitive when he brings up his past. We freely share in bed – all kinds of delights and we delight in each other.

But most of all, God has shown up and in very real ways shown us the power of prayer. He is good.

How has dealing with your baggage changed your marriage?

Ruth Buezis



Laid Back

It is funny how just a slight twist can make a position feel so different.

One of the most successful positions for a woman to experience an orgasm during intercourse without any extra stimulation is Coital Alignment Technique, or CAT. I wrote about it in a post titled Positions and Movements, so here is an excerpt from that article.

CAT is really just a variation of missionary position.The man enters and then shifts his body up towards his wife’s head so that his shaft is actually wrapped over her vulva and across her clitoris. Instead of elevating his body with his arms, he lowers his body just enough so that he does not put too much weight on her. The motion is not a thrusting in and out of the penis, but a rocking up and down. You will need to play around to figure out what works well, so direct his movement by placing your hands on his butt or hips… Women that orgasm easier with their legs together can, one at leg at a time, shift their legs to the inside of their husbands. Some women enjoy the feeling of being fully pinned against the bed by not using a pillow under their head.

The small twist of a husband sliding the pillow out from under her head changes everything. It tilts her head back to more of an attitude of surrender. The mattress provides firm support as her husbands body gently sandwiches her. No longer able to see anything other than her husbands face, eyes lock eyes. Rocking becomes a sensual interchange of connection and disconnection.  As husband and wife focus  on where their bodies become one, pelvis’s engage and urge for more.



Intimacy and Sex as a Newlywed

Today’s guest post is by Sharelle Guyton who attended the women’s Awaken-Love study earlier this year. Sharelle shared thoughtful insights during the study and we are excited for you to read her thoughts about being a newlywed.

As a newlywed, I felt myself sort of fumbling through the principle of frequency. We are instructed to model intimacy with our husbands based on our intimacy with God. This includes our frequency of intimacy. But while single, the goal is to stray away from acting on your desires. When those two experiences collide, it feels a little confusing at first.

My husband and I are both finding that we are going through an adjustment period as it relates to frequency. I think the best way to think about sex as a newlywed is with an open mind and heart. Making a clean slate to rebuild and redefine sex based on the Word of God and the unique interaction of you and your husband. I pondered on what could be a practical method of improving this area of our intimacy.

Here the quick tips that I recently incorporated into my marriage to heighten frequency awareness.

First, Reminding myself of the importance of frequency because it models my intimate relationship with God. For example, the days I miss my prayer and study time, I am not as clear and grounded. I also feel less connected and more distracted by the world.

Second, I track the days my husband and I are intimate. For some wives this might seem like an annoyance or anxiety provoking. For me, it is an opportunity to see the truth.

Why did I start doing this?

We couldn’t remember when we were having sex but we wanted to know how often it was happening in a month. I figured the best way to get to the bottom of this mystery was document it.

By tracking the dates on my feminine phone app calendar (Pink Pad), what I realized is that we were  having sex way more often we realized! Two to three times a week but why did it feel like it was only happening twice a month!

Here’s what I learned by tracking our intimacy.

On average, how long it takes before we start feeling disconnected from one another without sex is much shorter than we assumed. Also, tracking keeps us accountable in prioritizing sex. I am also naturally a very competitive person and that works in my favor sometimes when I look at the calendar and want to increase frequency from the previous week!

If you find yourself forgetting the last time you were intimate with your husband or not sure how often sex is happening, try tracking it and see if it surprises you.

Happy Exploring!

-Sharelle Guyton

How the Awaken-Love Class Opened My Eyes to Sex God’s Way

Today’s guest post is by Sharelle Guyton who attended the women’s Awaken-Love study earlier this year. Sharelle shared thoughtful insights during the study and we are excited for you to hear some of her thoughts here as well.

My husband and I were no strangers to sex when we got married. This area of sin is something we struggled with individually before we met and exacerbated over the course of our dating relationship. During the last two years of dating, we got serious about being more obedient to God’s Word, which meant no sex or sexual activity until we got married. We were not perfect at this, but still never stopped trying.

After we got engaged, we were very curious about what sex would be like after marriage, when it was no longer  a sin. We had a very short 6-month engagement and a small intimate wedding. As we were aiming to be more like Christ, we decided that was the best way to stay focused on Him and follow through with our commitment to sexual purity.

I was blessed to be able to take the Awaken-Love class after only three months of marriage. The results of applying the insight and wisdom from the course have far exceeded my expectations and imagination!

Thinking in hindsight about the years we both struggled to defeat sexual sin, the wisdom from the course was clear how interconnected it was to our disobedience to the will of God. As I learned about using intimacy with God as a model of intimacy with my husband, it was evident I was off target with my intimacy with God as a single woman. In the same way God is a model for my sexuality married, He was also a model for my sexuality single.

What struck me about the course is that the Word of God directly informs everything we need to know about having a healthy and fulfilling sexual relationship with our husbands. The freedom that comes with the gift of understanding the goodness of God’s intention and purposes for sex are powerful.

My husband and I have experienced such healing from our past sexual sin because we know the truth of our identity in Christ. The opportunity to begin our sexual journey as a married couple with the foundation and principles of this class is something that we will use throughout the entire course of our marriage. We cannot thank you enough.

-Sharelle Guyton

4 Year Anniversary of Awaken-Love

A year ago I wrote a post called REMEMBER that celebrated what God had done in my life and through Awaken-Love over the last 3 years. At the end of the post I made this statement…

The safety of staying in the back ground can be just as insulting to God. Why couldn’t God use me in those ways? What if I am supposed to speak to large groups? What if I am supposed to develop a video study? What if…?

I never in my wildest dreams imagined that I would actually make videos of the Awaken-Love study, but this June it will become a reality. God has given me an amazing ministry partner in Melanie – we point each other to God, we challenge each other, we speak God’s truth, and we dream the impossible. God is moving so fast, it is both terrifying and exhilarating. He has led us every step of the way and we are so excited to offer the Awaken-Love study to every married women that wants to take it. We are praying for doors to open and connections to be made to get the videos into women’s hands. We are praying for deep conversations as women meet and use the videos to learn about the intimacy God desires for them in their marriage and in their relationship with Him. We are praying that women would be made whole and marriages strengthened as they journey thru Awaken-Love.

So today I REMEMBER year 4 of Awaken-Love

Deep and Wide – I have a hard time turning people away from class just because it is filled. I figure that if they have enough nerve to contact me, then it is a divine appointment, that I had better keep. So for the last 6 months, every class I’ve taught has been filled with as many women as the room will hold. I worried that the large size (18-28 people) would result in women not sharing or going deep, but I have been completely proved wrong.  Women have joined in on discussions, they have openly shared their struggles and in fact, they have ministered to each other in powerful ways. There has been laughter, compassion, righteous anger and tears as the women learn and share, and it has been amazing. I love teaching Awaken-Love and I consider it an absolute privilege to walk along side of women.

Friends – Melanie joined me in June . She is an amazing teacher, my ministry partner and we are joined at the heart.  It has only been a year but it seems like a lifetime and I cannot imagine doing any of this without her. Erin, Melissa, Margie, Rebecca and Tracy have since joined our teaching ranks. Interviewing each of them was such a pleasure and privilege. To see God’s calling on them so strong, that they would step out and teach about sex – even when it was terrifying. They are amazing women and I consider it a privilege to minister side by side with them.

Men – One of the surprises that came this year was God calling us to further develop a men’s curriculum to compliment the women’s Awaken-Love study. With all that has happened this year, it has felt at times like a distraction, and yet I can’t seem to let it go. Melanie and I have spent time wrestling with ways to make the Men’s Edition most effective, accessible and act as a reinforcement to the women’s class. I am excited to team teach with my husband Jim in June as we continue to refine the curriculum. We are open to God’s calling and direction as we have no idea where we are going.

I asked Melanie to read last year’s post REMEMBER  and she emailed me saying,

I read this last night and smiled a lot.  It is amazing to know more of the details about the journey God has you on – and brought me to go on alongside you.  I can’t wait to hear the stories at year 5 and 10 and 15!  We have no idea what He has in store…which is a great thing because it exceeds anything we could plan!

And so we ask God for immeasurably more that we could plan or imagine…

Ruth BuezisIf  you want to help, we are still raising funds towards all the details that go with distributing the videos. Thank you for your support, for you encouragements and for your prayers.



clusters of grapesSong of Songs 7:8

May your breasts be like clusters of grapes on the vine,

Sometimes I think my husband is more interested in my breasts than in any other part of my body. They capture his eyes and entice his hands and he is fascinated by them.

But breasts are tricky. What can feel great one day can feel painful the next. Breasts change dramatically with monthly hormonal cycles, pregnancy and nursing. During high estrogen cycles like ovulation, early pregnancy or menopause adjustments, the nipples can be painfully tender.

How you handle her breasts communicates a lot. Do you respect her desires without pouting or getting defensive? Can you tell when her nipples are sensitive or even painful? Do you treat her with tenderness and care?  Do you understand when her identity is stretched as a provider of sustenance to an infant? Do you adore a part of her body that in many ways defines her femininity? Do you devour her when she wants to be devoured?

Though every woman is different, I am going to stick my neck out and try to give you some clues on ways to approach and handle your wife’s breasts.



Song of Song 7:2

Your navel is a rounded goblet
    that never lacks blended wine.

glass of red wine

Did you know that the vagina has the same pH as red wine?

Are you awed that a vagina can stretch enough for a baby to pass thru and can also shrink to snugly hug a man’s penis?

A woman’s vagina is amazing but most men know very little about it.



Song of Songs 6:2-3

My beloved has gone down to his garden,
    to the beds of spice

What follows are step by step instructions on getting to know your wife’s garden.  The goal is not to bring her to orgasm but to learn what feels good.

woman-holding-lily-flower-over-vaginaYour Wife’s Insecurities – Sharing her body with you is probably the most vulnerable thing your wife will do. She must feel safe and know that you will respect any wish that she has – without question or disappointment. She may not be comfortable letting you explore all of her, but to the extent that she does, your response will determine whether she gives you another try. Think about what attitude you would want your wife to have if she ever explored your penis. Verbally affirm her during and after the experience to let her know how much you loved it. Be amazed, awed, intrigued and blessed.

To approach your wife, simply tell her that you have been learning about the female body, and you would like to spend time getting to know her, because her body is the only one that matters. Tell her that you will be gentle, and she can tell you to stop or pause whenever she wants. Tell her you want her to tell you if anything is uncomfortable or what might feel better.


Getting to Know Your Wife’s Body

orchidYour wife has an amazing body that is capable of endless possibilities but can seem overwhelming and nonsensical to understand. If you are not careful, you might miss many of the small nuances that make your wife’s body special. The next few weeks, I will attempt to demystify the female body. We will spend time talking about her anatomy, how it likes to be touched, and suggest some ways to get to know her.

First we go down to the garden – that hidden, mysterious valley than can seem oh so confusing. Certainly her body is not as defined and visibly obvious as your penis, but with focus you will learn some amazing things.