Each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself,

and the wife must respect her husband.

Ephesians 5:33

We sat circled around the table in the waning light. Seven of us leaning forward, listening as women do—nodding, questioning, wanting more.

We needed Sarah’s wisdom, relished her insights. Each of us craving answers to the questions that haunt us.

A moment caught up in intense honesty.

Many years ago, Sarah and her husband, Emmerson, rediscovered a truth long buried in the pages of Scripture. A truth too long ignored by teachers and discounted by readers of God’s Word. A truth they have dedicated their lives to helping the rest of us embrace for ourselves.

That truth is this:

God wired men to need respect like the air they breathe. And He made women to crave love with that same intensity.

And we knew that, all of us in this circle of sisters. Read the books, heard the wisdom, tried to remember how to say the words right.

All of us failing, confessing the flaws, looking sideways to see if anyone knew the depth of our own shame. Of the words we wish we could delete from our histories.

And then Sarah said the words: Why don’t we see this as sin?


Not weakness? Not issues? Couldn’t we say simply that we all struggle with this?


When I snap at my husband for not getting it right— that’s sin.

When I growl at him because he did it again— that’s sin.

Correct him about inconsequentials in front of wide-eyed little ones— it’s sin.

Deny him the passion his body craves— sin.


We don’t like it, any of us.

We’re good girls. Committed wives. Partners with our husbands in ministry and life.

We don’t sin on purpose. We don’t want to. Try hard not to.

But we know she’s right. This is sin, this way we don’t give our husbands the respect they need.

The way we make it their fault. The way we must be right; in control. The way we insist they be what we want because that’s what we’ve heard they should be.

The way we make them less than men.

And I think its time we started talking about this, my dear girls. This need men have for respect and our way too frequent failure to give them the honor God commanded us to hold out to His warriors.

Will you join me in this conversation? Give us your wisdom? Be honest about the discoveries you’ve made the hard way?

I’ll be gathering up your comments and posting a list soon of ways we can show respect the men in our lives.

And another list of ways we communicate dishonor to the men in our lives.

If you haven’t read the book that Emmerson and Sarah wrote about their discovery, order it now. It’s called Love & Respect, The Love She Most Desires; The Respect He Desperately Needs.

Honestly, this is the one book I think we cannot afford to do without.

From my heart,


P.S. If you’re single and you want to know how this looks before you get married, Sarah’s daughter, Joy Eggerichs writes a fabulous blog called: love and respect now.