On our wedding day, we stand before our family and friends and our loving Lord and commit to each other with a vow that most likely goes something like: “to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until death do us part.” Hopefully, nobody else will say what this fellow said at the altar, “If you cannot be with the one you love, love the one you are with.” As he later commented, “That was probably not a great way to start off my wedding vows.”Read More
During the two decades I’ve spent teaching the Love and Respect message, based on Ephesians 5:33, the feedback and responses I’ve received from readers, conference attendees, and small group participants has ranged from eye-popping, marriage-saving revelations to “I agree for the most part, but you don’t know my situation” to downright rejection of God’s instructions to the married couple. Though the responses vary, the one constant remains: God’s Word commands the husband to love his wife unconditionally and the wife to respect her husband.Read More
To many husbands and wives, solving every single marital problem that arises means two completely different things concerning the quality of their marriage. Much of this stems from the different ways they each prefer to handle conflict.Read More
I believe a husband is to act lovingly whether or not he feels it. God’s command in Ephesians 5:33 for a husband to love his wife is to be followed as an act of obedience, not as a conditional response toward her respect for him.Read More
If you have attended or heard a Love and Respect Marriage Conference or read any of the books, more than likely you will recall some of my favorite terms, analogies, and acronyms, such as: Pink and Blue, C.O.U.P.L.E., C.H.A.I.R.S., the Crazy Cycle, the Energizing Cycle, and the Rewarded Cycle. While it certainly always brings a smile to my face to hear from readers and others that they, even many years later, still talk about “needing to get off the Crazy Cycle” or “their pink hearing aids didn’t hear what their blue husband was really saying,” what I most hope that people will remember is how all of this should be used to point them to Jesus. Let me explain.Read More
In my writings and conferences on Love and Respect, I like to use the analogy that men and women are as different as pink is from blue. Women look at the world through pink sunglasses, hear through pink hearing aids, and speak through a pink megaphone; while men do it all with blue. Which basically means a man and a woman can hear the exact same sentence and interpret it in completely different ways, or even say the exact same thing but mean completely different things with their words.Read More
A wife emails, "We began to have our usual discussion about his mom when the subject of priorities came up. This time it was linked to how each of us prioritized life. In short, he prioritizes on a scale of several things: task at hand, commitments, immediacy or emergency, etc. I prioritize based on relationships: a pecking order or hierarchy. This seemed odd to him, as his way seemed odd to me. But the more we talked, the more I thought this might be an instance of "pink" versus "blue"—neither one is wrong, just different.”Read More
Have you noticed that everyday problems and burdens cannot typically be shared, discussed, and dealt with between you and your spouse in the same way that you have handled similar situations all your life with your same-sex friends or siblings? For example, a wife comes to her husband with a problem she faces. His first instinct is to try and solve her problem, just as he would with another man who comes to him with a problem. He kicks into solution mode. Most men operate analytically. This is the way he helps his guy friends, who probably say something to him in response like, “I should have come to you weeks ago. Thanks.” They truly appreciate his recommended solution.Read More
In my book Love & Respect, I conclude that wives are made to love, want to love, and expect love. Alternatively, their husbands are made to be respected, want respect, and expect respect. However, I am always quick to point out that, though these conclusions have been based on years of research, studies, and polls with thousands of subjects, we must still view them as on a bell curve—there is certainly room for women to lean less on love and more on respect than other women do, and for men to place more importance on love than they do on respect.Read More
As I speak and write about often, there is a distinct pink and blue difference in men and women that God designed in all of us. She views the world through her pink sunglasses, speaks through her pink megaphone, and hears through her pink hearing aids. Which is completely different from how he interprets and communicates through his blue sunglasses, blue megaphone, and blue hearing aids.
This God-designed difference in men and women even extends to how they each are energized in their relationship with their spouse.Read More
Some folks resist anything that seems to reinforce a stereotype. Their initial response to stereotypes is usually to defend individualism and claim that such generalities do not define or explain their situations.
How do you feel about stereotypes when it comes to explaining differences between you and your spouse? What if I said that many women see life through pink sunglasses and many men see life through blue sunglasses and these views color what each sees, especially in conflict? Similarly, she wears pink hearing aids and he wears blue hearing aids and each “hears” something different during heated moments in marriage.Read More
I can't stand rules like being told to be kind, loving, and respectful. I'll be anyway I wish to be! Some rules are more like realities. They are the fixed facts of life that govern the essentials of living. They are immutable. Rebel against them and look like the village idiot. For example, we can rebel against the command of nature to eat, drink, and breathe, but why? Worse than looking like an idiot, we’d simply die. When rules reflect reality, why rebel against them?Read More
Over a ten-year period Fritz Ridenour was my editor. He soon became a family friend. Because of that he penned a poem for the wedding of Joy Eggerichs and Matt Reed. Those of you who know the love and respect message and all of our tag lines will appreciate his brilliance.
THE BALLAD OF PINK AND BLUERead More
Because God commands a husband to put on love toward his wife and a wife to come across respectfully to her husband (Ephesians 5:33), I have found it fascinating to think of the many ways of applying this instruction to the married. I believe many of you are making application of the positive aspects of the below 19 principles.
As you read this list, which ones do you do well? Why?
1. Decode the good will:Read More
Many wives have no idea why their husbands react negatively to their honest comments shared out of true concern. What to her is a caring attempt to offer a suggestion about something he needs to change, which would in fact be helpful to him if he listened to her, ends up hurting him.
What else can she do but judge him as childish for misunderstanding her?
Keg’s Carrot Cake: 2,300 Calories!
However, let’s put the shoe on the other foot. Is she childish and over-personalizing for not appreciating when he blurted out, "You aren't having that dessert, are you? The Keg’s carrot cake a la mode has over 2,300 calories!"Read More
Husbands and wives will not always agree with each other. There will often be differences of opinion and even differing convictions on issues that matter to one or both. Two people can be at odds with each other about what church to attend, private school versus public school, whether to spend or save money, whose parents to spend Christmas morning with, how to discipline the children, how often to have sex, the extent to which they should talk about their feelings about the relationship, and the list goes on. Over time, two people can hurt, frustrate, confuse, and anger each other, to the point where the wife is feeling unloved and the husband disrespected, contradictory to what is commanded in Ephesians 5:33.Read More
When a wife complains, “I have nothing to wear,” she means she has nothing new to wear. When a husband complains, “I have nothing to wear,” he means he has nothing clean to wear. In this instance, both say the exact same thing. “I have nothing to wear.” However, both mean something different. Why?
Because this humorous point brings home a simple truth that we too often miss: men and women differ.
She filters her life through her priorities and felt needs as a woman and he filters his world through his priorities and felt needs as a man.Read More
A husband wrote me, "My wife is beautiful. Not, Baywatch beach-bod type, but very girl-next-door beautiful. I tell her she is because I never want her to wonder how I feel about her. We have been married 12 years. We have three children. To my knowledge, my wife has never complimented me on my looks (sans the clothes I may wear from time to time). No ‘you're handsome, good-looking, hot, cute, sexy’...without me having to prompt her by asking…. She says she loves me, and I am pretty sure she does, but how? Like a close friend? Or like a devoted husband? How can a person who you devote your life to not be somewhat pleasing to the eye?”Read More