How to Navigate the Two Lanes of Love
Do We Really Love Each Other? – Part 2.2
What if I were to tell you that love, the way we know it, is only 50% of what’s needed? This would spark you to think a little differently wouldn’t it? Sounds like we’d need to get a better understanding of this word, L O V E.
Whether you realize it or not, a female spouse expects to receive love from her relationship with a male spouse. However, the male spouse expects love but it comes in the form of respect. I want you to hone in on the word, expect. It’s natural for a person to expect their significant other to desire love in the same manner they desire it. It’s all he or she knows from their position or rather point of view. However, the truth is they are different and have different expectations of what it is to love and be loved. Therefore we must educate ourselves with these distinct differences in mind.
So again I say, each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband. –bible.com/bible/116/EPH.5.33.NLT 
The two-way highway for love is Love + Respect.
Love is not a one-way street; it’s a two-way highway.
In the previous lesson, we referred to this as one lane headed east and the other lane headed west. Using this same analogy, let’s substitute “east” with “love” and substitute “west” with “respect.” One lane is heading for love while the other lane heads towards respect. We often wonder why a person finds themselves falling for another person or having an affair. One of the major causes of this breakdown has to do with this two lane highway. If you as your wife’s spouse are heading down the respect lane and she’s headed down the love lane, then you’re heading in opposite directions. What you’ve essentially done is head in a direction your spouse is not heading and frankly no where near. Therefore it’s easy to bump into someone else who gives the appearance of being on the same path.
The key here is to learn, husband, how to give your spouse love instead of respect in which you crave. And wife you must learn how to stop with all the love and offer your spouse, husband, respect which he craves.
She won’t respect; He won’t love. He won’t love; She won’t respect.
There is a vicious cycle couples find themselves in. Many believe it happens around year seven. Please don’t put that number in your head; that’s not true or it is only true in the law of averages of people surveyed. At any rate, the cycle of problems in your marriage begin when she won’t respect him and he won’t love her. It’s a cycle because when she’s not respecting him, he doesn’t feel he should show love to her and when he isn’t loving her, she feels she shouldn’t give respect to him. In other words, when you’re not getting what you need or desire, you don’t give your spouse what he or she needs or desires. This becomes a continuous cycle that spirals quickly out of control. He withholds love and she withholds respect. This places the couple on what I’m going to call the bad relationship cycle.
His fear and her fear keeps them on the bad relationship cycle.
As a result of being in this bad relationship cycle, each person becomes afraid to alter their course. Think of it this way, as a husband what if I give her the love she desires and she won’t give me the respect I need? As a wife what if I give him the respect he needs and he doesn’t give me the love I so desire? This fear is common and happens regularly. Of course, generally the two find themselves angry or upset with each other. This divide causes the wife not giving respect and the husband not supplying love. In other words, they withhold love and respect from each other. The couple doesn’t realize that giving love is the key to receiving respect for a husband and giving respect is the key to receiving love for a wife. The only thing that stands in the way of this is fear of not getting what you need and desire.
A husband must give love and a wife respect no matter what.
Now for the solution. While love in the “love and respect” sense is a two-way street, it also means you have to go in one direction, the direction of your spouse. In other words, you can not be selfish. Husband whether you receive respect or not you must give love and wife whether you receive love or not you must give respect. This practice opens the door to a marriage that’s worthwhile.
A wife has to learn the art of giving respect in the same way she wishes to receive love. A husband must learn the art of giving love in the same way he wishes to receive respect. When the two individuals accomplish this, they place themselves on a better cycle, the good relationship cycle in which they can not get enough. The husband receives more respect because he gives more love and the wife receives more love because she gives more respect.
Allow me to end this lesson this way. It’s easy for a couple to miss the importance of this lesson. Because a wife has a need for love, she does not get the need her spouse has for respect. Therefore she might not understand her husband’s need for it because her desire is for love. In the same way, a husband has a need for respect, so he does not get the need his spouse has for love. Therefore he might not understand his wife’s need for it because his desire is for respect. In order to have an uncommon marriage, a couple must master this two lane highway called love and respect.
Question: in what ways have you missed your spouse’s need for either love for a wife or respect for a husband?