Respect Vs. Love

March 21, 2012 at 11:43 pm (Intro)

Ephesians 5:25-28

 25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy, cleansing[b] her by the washing with water through the word, 27 and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. 28 In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself.

Proverbs 21:19 ESV /

It is better to live in a desert land than with a quarrelsome and fretful woman.

Proverbs 12:4ESV /

An excellent wife is the crown of her husband, but she who brings shame is like rottenness in his bones.

Proverbs 31:10-12ESV /

An excellent wife who can find? She is far more precious than jewels. The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain. She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life.

These verses come from and and are just a quick selection of some of what the Bible has to say about marriage. 

Hubs and I went out of town yesterday morning, and last night some pretty disrespectful stuff happened.  I’m not going in to details, but I will tell you that I spent a 4 hour drive musing over the idea that women should respect their husbands and that husbands ought to love their wives, and that it isn’t always easy.  I think that the verbs in these two phrases are very telling: respect vs. love.

I don’t remember where I read it, but I once read a survey that said that nearly 75% of men would choose to be respected over being loved.  I thought that this was astounding, but upon reflection, I realized that it very much lined up with the feelings of guys being the in charge providers that they are designed to be, the “alpha” partner in the marriage.  To most men, respect shows submission and love.

Women are different. We want to be loved. We want to feel important and cherished. It has to do with the fairy-tale princess in each of us.  If we feel loved then we are capable of doing most anything in the world.  A few years ago I read Captivating, a devotional about letting Christ romance you, and it was very eye-opening about how women yearn to be valued and taken care of. And, regardless of how independently minded we are, it’s true.

Along this very long drive home, I reached the conclusion that I have to show respect to my husband even if I do not currently feel loved. I’m not going a great job of it right now, but I know that it is something that I need to work on. This doesn’t mean that I will be a doormat or that everything is okay; rather, it means that I am willing to show respect to a man that I know is flawed (as are we all).  It will take time to heal from our “vacation” but it time we will be fine.  Between now and then though, I do have to respect my husband, even when I feel like he isn’t showing love to me.  It’s been a very strained day between us, but I still love him, and the best way for me to show that love is through respecting him.  

P.S. Sorry if this is disjointed, it’s more of a “words tumbling out after a vague sense of mental organization” than a “well thought out post espousing roles within marriage.” 


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