The Rewarded Cycle
Let's delve into an eye-opening truth in Ephesians 6:7-8. We're called to do everything unto Christ, who rewards us accordingly. But how can we apply the phrase "as to the Lord" to our spouse? I share how in what I call The Rewarded Cycle. This truth has revolutionized countless marriages. Through surveys and testimonials, we've witnessed its profound impact on the individual in the marriage. In this collection, you can uncover the principle of doing marriage God's way even if your spouse does not join you.
“Help! Forget Respect—What If I Don’t Even Love My Husband?”
In Ephesians 5:33, husbands are commanded to love their wives, and wives are commanded to respect their husbands. One obvious question that I often receive concerning this is, “Why aren’t wives commanded to love their husbands?” The answer I always share is that God is not in the business of commanding us to do things that we naturally do on our own. Put simply, women love to love.
What Keeps You Motivated When the Love and Respect Are Not Reciprocal?
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.
It’s All About Jesus
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.
Love and Respect Is a Daily Practice, Not a One-Time Fix
One day I received the following message from a husband that encouraged me greatly, as do so many letters I receive from people who have discovered the Love and respect message: The reason we came to the conference was because my pastor found out that I had filed for divorce. And he asked if I would go see you. I was so bitter at this point, I told my pastor that I would apply it in my next marriage. He said, “Okay, I'll pay for the weekend. Just go!” And I really thought nothing you would say could change my mind. It was the most eye-opening weekend of my life. [My wife] and I both wanted the divorce but we really had no good reason, just unhappy. Your conference turned on all kinds of light bulbs for both of us. And it saved our marriage. Emerson, God is using you in a big way. I just wanted to say thank you. If only this couple had taken to heart Paul’s warning in 1 Corinthians 10:12, which says, “let him who thinks he stands take heed that he does not fall.”
How Do You Define “Healthy” When It Comes to Relationships?
Have you ever noticed how people seem to have different interpretations of or responses to the word “healthy” as they apply it to different things? Every parent loves to hear the news of their “healthy” baby just born and laid in their arms. But they are certainly under no illusion that their child will never be sick. Yes, their “healthy” child will more than likely even end back up in a hospital again one day from being so sick. Or a “healthy” savings account or 401(k) always lights up the eyes of a hard worker longing for the days of vacation, home renovation, or retirement. But as most people have learned in today’s roller coaster market, there is no guarantee that tomorrow’s balance will be quite as “healthy.” But does that mean we pull all our money out and stash it under our mattress? No, we leave it alone, with faith that the days ahead will once again be “healthy.” And of course they usually are.
A Man’s Discovery That Respect Is a Biblical Truth
In Ephesians 5:33, the apostle Paul wrote, “each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.” As God does not command things that are unnecessary, we can then infer that a woman has a need to feel loved (which no one ever disputes); but in the same token, we must then conclude that a man has a need to feel respected. And of course, the man’s need for respect has been largely glossed over by many throughout history, including in the church.
Who Moves First?
I have had people say that because in Ephesians 5:33a God first commands the husband to love his wife and then in Ephesians 5:33b God commands the wife to respect her husband, then a wife need only respect her husband AFTER he first loves her. They argue that the husband must move first because he is mentioned first. Do you believe this?
Who is the Mature One in Your Marriage?
I often challenge couples by saying, “The mature one goes first.” It is much easier to sit back and say, “Well Emerson, I would be more loving if my wife was more respectful!” Or, “Why should I show my husband respect when he is treating me in an unloving way?” Of course it is easier to be obedient to God in our marriage when our husband or wife is also being obedient. Unfortunately, that is not always the case.
Can We Manipulate Each Other With The Love And Respect Teaching?
Though God commands the husband to love and a wife to respect, a strange twist might take place. A wife puts on respect for one reason: to get her husband to be loving. A husband puts on love solely to get his wife to respect him. One pastor wrote Emerson and shared his concerns fearing this very thing: that husbands and wives will manipulate each other when applying love and respect based on Ephesians 5:33. Join Emerson and Jonathan this weeks as they discuss this topic.
What Does Winning The Lottery Have To Do With Marriage And Heaven? Part 2
In Part 2 of What Does Winning The Lottery Have To Do With Marriage And Heaven? Emerson and Jonathan continue the discussion about rewarded and unrewarded believers. While difficult concepts are discussed, salient scriptures are examined that pertain to why we do what we do as Christians when it comes to marriage, parenting, and beyond.
What Does Winning The Lottery Have To Do With Marriage And Heaven? Part 1
In this week's episode, Emerson and Jonathan discuss specific Scriptures about heaven, future rewards, and why it is that what we do in this life matters more than we may realize. Whether in marriage, parenting, or relationships in general, this message is sure to enrich and empower as one understands that nothing is wasted when we do things unto Christ.
Oh The Joy, God Sees Your Every Sacrifice In Your Marriage!
Do you ever feel like what you are doing in your marriage isn't worth it? Through the story of the widow's mite, Emerson and Jonathan discuss why everything one does in their marriage matters, immensely so. Join them this week as they explain why nothing is wasted before God, even when it feels like nothing you are doing is effective.