Respect, like love, must be given unconditionally to your loved ones.

The Importance of Relating
Love and Respect – Part 2

Scripture Reading:  Ephesians 5:22-32

Key Verse:  Ephesians 5:33

However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

Yesterday we talked about the husband’s challenge of learning to love his wife with the kind of love that God requires: Action love!  Today we turn to the challenge of the wife.  The printed key verse reminds wives to respect their husbands.  Someone has suggested that the reason God did not tell wives to love their husbands is because women do that very naturally, but they struggle more with the concept of respect.  That may be true and we want to understand the concept of respect.

            Respect is defined as an act of giving particular attention to someone or something.  It is an expression of high or special regard.  Ladies, this is your challenge: Give your husband attention with a high regard for his good.  Will he be able to earn this?  He can earn your respect in the same way as you can earn his love—very seldom!  You need him to love you unconditionally.  He needs you to respect him unconditionally.

            When there are undesired behaviors, they must be talked about in a respectful way!  If he does not respond to your needs, you still have the responsibility to be the person God calls you to be!  If it gets extreme enough to merit counseling or separation, then those options can be considered without being verbally disrespectful.  Christ likeness is not conditional on another’s behavior!

Father, I will need your inner strength to keep my part of the covenant of marriage!  Be my guide and my peace.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

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