Part Three: LOVE & RESPECT
“We embrace diversity of all kinds except for ideological. …We want to be inclusive of people who don’t look like us - so long as they think like us.” ~Nicholas Kristof, a staunch liberal in an article in the New York Times.
This is the point. And this is a big problem and is a danger all of us need to avoid. Especially as Christians because “the labels people put on you could cause you to miss God’s plan for you.” ~Andy Stanley.
Jesus modelled something completely different. Jesus was inclusive of ALL types of people. He didn’t subscribe to labels. He attracted Jews & Gentiles; Pharisees & Sadducees; Tax Collectors & Sinners despite the fact that they thought nothing alike.
We need to model our lives after Jesus. Remove the labels and embrace the power of AND.
Paul is teaching the church in Ephesus about marriage and he makes some very pointed and powerful points. Then after talking about the relationship between a husband and wife, he makes this point…
Ephesians 5:32-33 (NCV)
That secret is very important—I am talking about Christ and the church.
His teaching point about relationships is based upon how Jesus loved people and loves the church. Look at the powerful AND in his summary in the next verse. It’s subtle, but a vital lesson of how we are to love each other…
33 But each one of you must love his wife as he loves himself, and a wife must respect her husband.
Love AND respect.
What is love?
1 Corinthians 13:4-7 (NIV)
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
This is how Jesus loved and is how we are to love.
What is respect?
Ephesians 5:33 (AMP)
and the wife [must see to it] that she respects and delights in her husband [that she notices him and prefers him and treats him with loving concern, treasuring him, honoring him, and holding him dear].
The word respect is a translation of the Greek word timēsate, meaning “honor or value.” It literally means “to place a great value or high price on something.”
Love is cherishing and bringing security. Respect is honour and bringing significance. It’s being a raving fan.
Look at how Jesus modelled this with his followers.
John 13:3-5 (NIV)
3 Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; 4 so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. 5 After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.
John 13:12-17 (NIV)
12 When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. 13 “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. 14 Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. 15 I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. 16 Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him.
This is Love and Respect
17 Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.
[bctt tweet="Jesus just didn’t give love when it wasn’t earned, he gave undeserved respect as well #thepowerofAND #myvictory" username="kellystickel"]
Can you respect/value/honor even those that don't deserve it? Even those you may consider your 'enemy'?
[bctt tweet="Religion says change. Then God will accept you. Jesus says I accept you before you change." ]
Jesus just didn’t give love when it wasn’t earned, He gave undeserved respect as well. #loveANDrespect #thepowerofAND #myvictory