Conveying Great Worth

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Respect in marriage takes many forms. How can you begin showing genuine respect to your spouse today?

Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. Romans 12:10, NIV

To respect means to value, to give honor, and to regard highly. It means to convey great worth.

God understands respect. One day soon the Father will highly exalt His Son, giving Him a name above every other name. One day soon, at the name of Jesus every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus is Lord (Romans 14:11).

God also understands disrespect. The Father sent prophets to the children of Israel, but they were mocked. He sent priests to be mediators between Himself and the people, but the people ignored the priests. God sent His Son to be His people's ultimate deliverer, but they rejected Him.

He was "despised and rejected" (Isaiah 53:3, NIV).

In marriage, we must also understand respect. Respect takes many forms. Respecting Teresa means asking before I take something that belongs to her and returning something I borrowed. Respect means checking with her before making plans that affect her.

One of the best ways to show Teresa respect is to sincerely confess when I have done wrong. To tell her, "I was wrong, and I care about your hurt" conveys that her feelings are important to me. A sincere confession lets my wife know that I regard her so highly that I don't want to leave any hurt unhealed.

We must also understand what respect sounds like. To give respect means talking to Teresa with an appropriate tone of voice—one that is free from sarcasm, haughtiness, or condescension. Respect might include asking her opinion or preferences. It means treating my spouse's choices, schedules, and ideas as valuable and worthwhile.

How can you begin showing genuine respect to your spouse today?

Father, help me to give honor to my spouse as well as Your Son.

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