The marriage ministry of Jesus Community Church is based on the teachings of Ephesians 5:33 – solid instruction to husbands and wives. Dr. Emerson Eggerichs wrote a biblically based study centered on the scriptural principles of love and respect, as outlined in Ephesians 5:33. Here are some excerpts from his book, which we utilize as a tool in our marriage ministry:
Cracking the communication code between husband and wife involves understanding one thing: that unconditional respect is as powerful for him as unconditional love is for her. It’s the secret to marriage that every couple seeks.
C-O-U-P-L-E: How to spell love to your wife:
Closeness – she wants you to be close
Openness – she wants you to open up to her
Understanding – don’t try to “fix” her; just listen
Peacemaking- she wants you to say, “I’m sorry”
Loyalty – she needs to know you’re committed
Esteem – she wants you to honor and cherish her
C-H-A-I-R-S: How to spell respect to your husband:
Conquest – appreciate his desire to work and achieve
Hierarchy – appreciate his design to protect and provide
Authority – appreciate his design to serve and lead
Insight – appreciate his desire to analyze and counsel
Relationship – appreciate his desire for shoulder-to-shoulder friendship
Sexuality – appreciate his need for sexual intimacy
Always ask yourself:
- Is what I am about to do going to feel unloving to her?
- Is what I am about to do going to feel disrespectful to him?
Things to remember:
- When she is being critical or angry, she is crying out for your love; her intent is not to be disrespectful.
- When he is being harsh or stonewalling you, he is crying out for respect; his intention is not be unloving.
- When you feel disrespected, you tend to react in unloving ways and don’t see it.
- When you feel unloved, you tend to react disrespectfully and don’t see it.
- When you feel disrespected, it is not natural for you to be loving in return; you must love her in an act of obedience to Christ.
- When you feel unloved, it is not natural for you to be respectful in return; you must respect him in an act of obedience to Christ.
- Ultimately you show your love for Christ when you unconditionally love your wife.
- Ultimately, you show your reverence for Christ when you unconditionally respect your husband.
The above information is just a sampling of the insights and techniques shared in the Love and Respect book and discussed in our marriage Bible study small groups.