Love & Respect
originally written 12 Oct 14
posted 14 Oct 14
photo by: Shirley/Missouri/Sep 2014
We are made in the image of God.

"So God created mankind in his own image, 
in the image of God he created them;
male and female he created them."
Genesis 1:27

People often complain that life should come with an instruction manual.
Our Creator God provided one,
if we will but study and seek to understand it!
Contained within the pages of the Holy Bible are commands with purpose
and one such command provides for key basic needs:

"However, each one of you must love his wife as he loves himself
and the wife must respect her husband."
Ephesians 5:33

Women need to feel loved.
Men need to feel respected.
Countless studies have confirmed this.
So many conflicts in marriages could be resolved (or avoided)
if only these two basic needs were met.

This is NOT about men vs women in the seemingly
never-ending battle of the sexes of who is better/stronger/etc.
These commands involve/portray a bigger picture.

If we back up and read the full passage surrounding the above verse
in Ephesians, chapter 5*, we will see
a bigger picture of the Bride and Groom relationship.

Christ and the church = Bridegroom and Bride
Jesus desires (and deserves) both our love and our respect.

We will not always know why our Savior Lord makes certain decisions
but we must respect His position of authority and defer to it.
This is made easier BECAUSE we know He loves us unselfishly.

In the same way, when a woman feels secure in the love of her husband,
she finds it easier to respect him.
The same applies to the man, when he feels his wife respects him,
he finds it easier to love her without reservation.

*Ephesians 5:21-33
Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.

Wives submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord.  For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior.  Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.  In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies.  He who loves his wife loves himself.  After all, no one ever hated their own body, but they feed and care for their body, just as Christ does the church--for we are members of his body.  "For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh."  This is a profound mystery--but I am talking about Christ and the church.  However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.
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