Love is about giving, not getting; at least not in the direct one-for-one way. Giving love does bring benefits to the lover (“he who loves his wife loves himself — Eph. 5:28), but true love always has the long view of things. This is even more necessary if we have run the ship off course; we’re not going to turn it around on a dime. As the heads of our households we’re responsible for the course of our cruise. If our ship isn’t where she should be, we have to begin by acknowledging that it’s not primarily the crew’s fault, but ours. The first mate follows our lead, if not our orders.

Great leaders inspire those under their charge to willingly do their best. Great leaders don’t start with orders but with examples. Everyone can see what a man is. If he loves his ship and his crew it’s obvious to all. If he loves himself and his privilege as captain, then the crew will resent him, avoid him, and go around him. If he has earned their respect, they will honor him, love him, and serve him well.

We get what we give.

“Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.” —Luke 6:38