Fast Wednesdays: Week of October 15, 2014 – “Topic 3: Respect and Love – Character in our Spiritual Development”

Greetings Beloved!

This week’s focus is on Respect and Love (from recent our survey): 

1) Gifts or Character

2) Faith or Hope (Last week’s topic)

3) Respect or Love

4) Silence or Debating

5) Humility or Servant

This week’s topic is definitely very interesting and I could come at it from all types of angles. I will briefly share though something I learned that looks at Love and Respect from both a man and woman perspective. A really good thing about this informtion is that it may be used no matter what type of relationship you are in: single, dating, married, divorce, etc.

In the 2007/2008, my husband and I attended a bible study on “Love and Respect” by Emerson & Sarah Eggerichs. It was a eye opener on major differences between men and women and what motivates each. Following is an excerpt from their website:  http://loveandrespect.com/about-us/

“What is Love and Respect? We believe love best motivates a woman and respect most powerfully motivates a man. Research reveals that during marital conflict a husband most often reacts when feeling disrespected and a wife reacts when feeling unloved.  We asked 7,000 people this question: when you are in a conflict with your spouse or significant other, do you feel unloved or disrespected?  83% of the men said “disrespected.”  72% of the women said, “unloved.”  Though we all need love and respect equally, the felt need differs during conflict, and this difference is as different as pink is from blue!

We conduct conferences and provide resources to the married, divorced, separated, dating and single. Men and women will learn how to resolve conflict, dealing with the negative reactions (the crazy cycle). They will also learn how to motivate each other by meeting each other’s need (the energizing cycle). Even those who feel hopeless in their relationships will gain understanding on how to handle an indifferent or unresponsive partner (the rewarded cycle).

Each cycle centers on two concepts: love and respect. These two words surface in social research and the bible (Ephesians 5:33) as the two key ingredients for a successful marriage. From our research, those attending the Love and Respect conference, watching the Love and Respect DVD in small groups, or reading the Love and Respect resources, are experiencing understanding, forgiveness, reconciliation, change, and hope. Through personal enrichment, they go on to minister to others in small groups. Check out our menu – especially the testimonies. God bless!”

Well, my question to you today is can you love someone without respecting or can you respect someone with loving? You answer for yourself…I know what mine is and I continue praying because this is an extremely difficult topic, however, if you are seeking spiritual development, no subject is off limits.

I’ll leave you with a song by one of the greatest all time singers … we actually had a Fast Wednesday where we discussed her, Whitney Houston…she and her life speaks volumes on the topic of love!

SONG:  The Greatest Love of All – Whitney Houston

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IYzlVDlE72w

G.O.D. – God Answers Prayer.

PRAYER:

Lord, teach us how to love you, ourselves and each other. Amen.

SCRIPTURES on LOVE:

  • Mark 12:31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
  • Luke 6:31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.
  • Luke 6:35 But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked.
  • John 8:13 The Pharisees challenged him, “Here you are, appearing as your own witness; your testimony is not valid.”
  • Romans 12:9 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.
  • Romans 13:10 Love does no harm to its neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.
  • 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.  Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.
  • 1 Corinthians 13:13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
  • Ephesians 4:2 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.
  • 1 Peter 4:8 Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.
  • 1 John 4:7 Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.
  • 1 John 4:18-19 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.  We love because he first loved us.
  • John 15:13 Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.
  • Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.
  • Ephesians 5:33 However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.
  • Colossians 3:14 And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
  • Proverbs 10:12 Hatred stirs up dissension, but love covers over all wrongs.
  • Proverbs 17:17 A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.
  • 1 John 3:16-18 This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers.  If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him?  Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.
  • 1 John 4:8 Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.
  • John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
  • Psalm 18:1 I love you, O LORD, my strength.
  • Matthew 22:27-29 Finally, the woman died.  Now then, at the resurrection, whose wife will she be of the seven, since all of them were married to her?”  Jesus replied, “You are in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God.
  • Deuteronomy 10:12-19 And now, O Israel, what does the LORD your God ask of you but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all his ways, to love him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul,  and to observe the LORD’s commands and decrees that I am giving you today for your own good?  To the LORD your God belong the heavens, even the highest heavens, the earth and everything in it.  Yet the LORD set his affection on your forefathers and loved them, and he chose you, their descendants, above all the nations, as it is today.  Circumcise your hearts, therefore, and do not be stiff-necked any longer.  For the LORD your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who shows no partiality and accepts no bribes.  He defends the cause of the fatherless and the widow, and loves the alien, giving him food and clothing.  And you are to love those who are aliens, for you yourselves were aliens in Egypt.
  • Deuteronomy 11:13-22 So if you faithfully obey the commands I am giving you today–to love the LORD your God and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul–  then I will send rain on your land in its season, both autumn and spring rains, so that you may gather in your grain, new wine and oil.  I will provide grass in the fields for your cattle, and you will eat and be satisfied.  Be careful, or you will be enticed to turn away and worship other gods and bow down to them.  Then the LORD’s anger will burn against you, and he will shut the heavens so that it will not rain and the ground will yield no produce, and you will soon perish from the good land the LORD is giving you.  Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads.  Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.  Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates,  so that your days and the days of your children may be many in the land that the LORD swore to give your forefathers, as many as the days that the heavens are above the earth.  If you carefully observe all these commands I am giving you to follow–to love the LORD your God, to walk in all his ways and to hold fast to him—
  • Song of Solomon 8:4-8 Daughters of Jerusalem, I charge you: Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires.  Who is this coming up from the desert leaning on her lover? Under the apple tree I roused you; there your mother conceived you, there she who was in labor gave you birth.  Place me like a seal over your heart, like a seal on your arm; for love is as strong as death, its jealousy unyielding as the grave. It burns like blazing fire, like a mighty flame.  Many waters cannot quench love; rivers cannot wash it away. If one were to give all the wealth of his house for love, it would be utterly scorned.  We have a young sister, and her breasts are not yet grown. What shall we do for our sister for the day she is spoken for?
  • Matthew 6:24 “No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.
  • Matthew 22:37-39 Jesus replied: ” ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’  This is the first and greatest commandment.  And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’
  • Matthew 23:6-8 they love the place of honor at banquets and the most important seats in the synagogues;  they love to be greeted in the marketplaces and to have men call them ‘Rabbi.’  “But you are not to be called ‘Rabbi,’ for you have only one Master and you are all brothers.

 

Love, Joy and Peace, 
Debra J. Ellis

Reminder AND/OR for those of you just joining us: The purpose of Fast Wednesdays is to draw near to God on this specific day of the week fasting and praying in whatever manner the Holy Spirit is leading you as sisters (and some brothers) in Christ…some have fasted from social media, coffee, or observed a traditional fast with no eating from sunrise to sunset with only liquids for the day, no deserts, etc. I know many of us, for various reasons, participate every week but in different manners. This has still been beneficial and the blog continues to grow!

The key ingredient is that we are doing this together as sisters, of all ages, in the Lord, both chronologically and spiritually in accordance to: A God-Filled Life Titus 2:3-5 “Guide older women into lives of reverence so they end up as neither gossips nor drunks, but models of goodness. By looking at them, the younger women will know how to love their husbands and children, be virtuous and pure, keep a good house, be good wives. We don’t want anyone looking down on God’s Message because of their behavior.”  Note: Please share Fast Wednesdays with your friends and/or send me names to add to the distribution list. For now, I will post in three places: email (djf52055@gmail.com), Facebook (Debra Fuller Ellis) and blog in Word Press:  https://fastwednesdays.wordpress.com/

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Preview YouTube video Whitney Houston – Greatest Love Of All

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