How Do You Spell Love?
I used to love the commercials years ago in which one would ask, “How do you spell relief?” The answer was “R…O…L…A…I…D…S.” Do we remember the Oscar Meyer bologna commercial? “My bologna has a first name….” I imagine most of us remember such. Along these same lines, I would like to examine how to spell “love” in our families.
Wives spell “ love ” in the following way: “S…U…B…M…I…T.” Paul wrote, “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord” (Eph. 5:22). The way that wives express and demonstrate love for their husbands is when they submit to his leadership (Eph. 5:23). A wife that does not submit to her husband is a wife that does not love her husband. A wife that truly loves her husband is one who is willing and glad to submit.
Husbands spell “ love ” in the following way: “S…A…C…R…I…F…I…C…E.” Paul continued, “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it” (Eph. 5:25). Note that Jesus sacrificed His very life for the church, and this is how the inspired apostle says that husbands are to love their wives. As husbands, we are to sacrifice ourselves for our wives. We do not just put our lives on the line for our wives in some heroic way, but it includes the little things also. We sacrifice our time, our money, our efforts, our attention, our affections—everything! A husband who will not sacrifice for his wife does not really love his wife!
Children spell “ love ” in the following way: “A…D…H…E…R…E.” When Paul spoke concerning children, he said that they are to obey (Eph. 6:1) and honor (Eph. 6:2-3) their parents. In other words, they are to adhere to them by obeying them and honoring them. A child who is unwilling to do this really does not love his or her parents.
Parents spell “ love ” in the following way: “A…I…M.” Paul declared, “And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord” (Eph. 6:4). Note that parents have a definite role for their children—they are to aim them properly in life by teaching, instructing, disciplining and encouraging. Thus, this harmonizes with the Old Testament sage who stated the proverb, “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it” (Prov. 22:6). Parents who love their children are concerning about the direction they will go—they make sure that they are aimed in the right direction (cf. Ps. 127:4), but parents who are not concerned about their direction really do not love them.
How do you spell love in your family?