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
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
Most wives I have met actually do long for their husbands to be the spiritual leader of their family. They are not resisting his leadership; they truly do believe it's biblical. However, they fear that he will not take their opinions into consideration.Read More
This should in no way be surprising to hear, but simply realizing the causes and effects of the Crazy Cycle does not mean you and your spouse will stop taking spins on them. Learning about her pink way of communicating and interpreting the world, as opposed to your blue perspective on life, does not mean you will always like her pink way of going about things or that she will always speak to you in a way that your blue hearing aids correctly interpret as a respectful response. And even if a wife always keeps Ephesians 5:33 at the forefront of her mind and shows unconditional respect, reinforced by the greatest Respect Talk known to man, this does not mean her husband will love her perfectly, all the time, in a way that is music to her pink ears.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
One of the questions I hear the most is some variation of, “Are you telling me I have to unconditionally respect my husband’s bad behavior and become a door mat? Everyone knows respect must be earned!”
Interestingly, in our culture we don’t have a problem understanding unconditional love… in fact, we see unconditional love as the right of every human being. Imagine expecting our children to “earn” our love! We would disapprove of such parenting. Most of us have no problem separating the person from their behavior when it comes to love. Love the person, hate the sin. Right?
Would it surprise you to hear me say that there is no better method for a husband to use to better energize, motivate, and influence his wife than to simply love her unconditionally? When a wife recognizes that her husband has decided to be a man who authentically and consistently loves her no matter her response, she comes under conviction about her disrespectful reactions to him.
When a wife discerns that her husband is not loving her based on her performance, but for the woman she is deep in her heart and for who God made her to be, this convicts and softens her.Read More
In our love saturated culture, everyone understands and expects unconditional love. On the other hand, what is your reaction to the phrase “unconditional respect”? In 1 Peter 3:1,2 a wife is instructed that she can win her disobedient husband via her respectful behavior.
These Scriptures say:Read More
Wives, what would you think if your husband said something like the following? “On a scale of 1–10, you have to be at least a 7 according to my standards before I will speak to you with a loving tone of voice. If you are a 6 or below, I will talk to you any way I like. If I sound a little rough or crude, get used to it.” Husbands, what would you think if your wife said something like the following? “On a scale of 1–10, you have to be at least a 7 according to my standards before I will speak to you respectfully. If you are a 6 or below, I will say what I like, usually with some contempt.”Read More
In part 1, we discussed Job and his disrespectful wife and how he was able to love her “as to the Lord,” despite her being a conduit for the devil. Now let’s turn to a biblical example of an unloving husband with a wife who found a way to still respect him.
What about the Respectful Wife?
What about the wife living with a man who turns everybody off?Read More
Some people live in fear that as they seek to apply the Love and Respect message their spouse will not respond in like manner. When that happens, their fears are confirmed and they ask, “What do I do now?”
Respectful Yet Unloved / Loving Yet Dissed
Based on Ephesians 5:33 a wife puts on respect in obedience to God’s command with the hope that her husband will act on his part of the verse where God commands him to love her. She works hard at respecting his work efforts, his sense of responsibility to protect and provide, his personal strength and decision-making, his shoulder-to-shoulder friendship without talking, and his sexuality, yet he does not reciprocate with the love she needs.Read More
Some people live in fear that as they seek to apply the Love and Respect message their spouse will not respond in like manner, and then when that happens it confirms their fears. Join Emerson and Jonathan this week as they discuss this important topic.Read More
Sarah, my wife, had started a MOPS group at our church. This refers to Mothers of PreSchoolers! The leadership invited me to speak two times to the group about what I had announced at the church were some discoveries I had made about marriage. In 1998 my discovery revolved around wives respecting their husbands. With most that flew like a lead balloon. I had no ideas about the land-mines I would step on. For instance, I did not finish in two sessions so offered to return for a third session.Read More
I hear often from discouraged husbands and wives who say their marriage simply does not work. They feel they have tried everything – even love and respect – and it didn't work. They are ready to give up. If this describes you, are you willing to try a new approach?
But my spouse doesn't respond!
What is your worst fear in marriage? Is it that you will do all you can to love and respect unconditionally but your spouse will not respond? If so, you are not alone in that fear. After all, it takes two, right? And if your spouse has already given up, there is nothing left to do.Read More
We all know that a dad ought to love his daughter unconditionally. All would define love as unconditional. Love with “conditions” is not love at all. But what about respect toward a teenage boy? Should mom show unconditional respect?
Many in the culture argue that a boy (or anyone) must earn respect. He must be respectable to be respected. To put it this way, if mom respects her disobedient boy, she will be respecting bad behavior and giving him license to disobey even more. Instead, she must give no such respect!Read More
In Part 1 of this 2-part series, I painted a picture of how contempt and disdain can reap devastating consequences on a marriage. But I also shared a story with you of how one wife applied unconditional respect to a difficult situation that has become all-too-common in today’s technologically saturated society, and how it can result in hope and eventual healing.
I left you with this question: What do wives need to understand about unconditional respect?
Let’s continue...Read More
Is unconditional respect a Biblical idea? Yes. 1 Peter 3:12 states, “In the same way, you wives, be submissive to your own husbands so that even if any of them are disobedient to the word, they may be won without a word by the behavior of their wives, as they observe your chaste and respectful behavior.” The husband is disobedient to the Word. He is either an unbeliever or a carnal believer living contrary to Christ and God’s Word.Read More