Love and Respect

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Romans 12:10 “Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.”            

I do a lot of weddings. I’m always looking for appropriate bible verses that help express the core of love to the couple and those in attendance. This one is one of my favorites for several reasons. The verbs “be devoted” and “honor” are written in the imperative. That means it’s a command to do something, not a suggestion. Honor and devotion are awesome words. Both words communicate love and respect.


A book by the same title, “Love and Respect” was written by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs. He subtitles it, “The love she most desires; the respect he desperately needs.” Those two components are found together in this passage. Love is not a feeling but a choice and a decision to do something. It’s not what you feel but what you do. Being devoted to one another in love means that we honor others above ourselves and put others before ourselves.


Our American culture often asserts that we are all rugged individuals. We don’t need anybody. I can do what I want, when I want, to whom I want, whenever I want. When we show love to other believers, and respect them, we are following Paul’s imperative and Christ’s to “love your neighbor as yourself.” The word for “be devoted” means the type of loyalty and affection that family members have for one another. It allows for faults and flaws, yet with a strong commitment and loyalty to others. This is the kind of love that holds marriages together, families together and churches together.


Today, take the Bible at its word and take it to heart. Demonstrate devotion, love and honor to others, especially in the church. Weave the words “you first” into your conversations. You’ll be surprised at the results and rewards.

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