Excited and burdened about male and female communication, Emerson launched the Love and Respect Conferences in August 1999 to serve husbands and wives. (http://www.loveandrespect.com)
Sarah and Emerson are convinced that a truth hidden in plain sight for 2000 years can make a difference in every marriage. This truth is found in Ephesians 5:33. Husbands must love their wives and wives must respect their husbands.
Emerson writes, “You may remember how the Beatles sang, ‘All you need is love.’ I absolutely disagree with that conclusion. Five out of ten marriages today are ending in divorce because love alone is not enough. Yes, love is vital, especially for the wife, but what we have missed is the husband’s need for respect. This Love and Respect message is about how the wife can fulfill her need to be loved by giving her husband what he needs — respect. And the husband can fulfill his need to be respected by giving his wife what she needs — love. Does this always work? No. But if one is married to a person of good will, I would bet the farm that it would work!”
Emerson received his B.A. in Biblical Studies and an M.A. in Communications from Wheaton College and Graduate school. He was later awarded his Masters in Divinity from Dubuque Seminary. Later, he earned his Ph.D. from Michigan State University in Child and Family Ecology. Emerson was the senior pastor of East Lansing Trinity church from 1980 to 1999. He loved the pastorate in this college town with nearly 45,000 students. When he came, the church had 450 in attendance, and when he left over 2000 attended. He oversaw a paid staff of 40. He also initiated a building program, relocating Trinity Church on 70 beautiful acres in the Lansing area. That was completed in the year 2000.
Focus on the Family is sponsoring many of the Love and Respect Conferences across the nation.
The book Love and Respect (The Love She Most Desires / The Respect He Desperately Needs) won two awards in 2005: the Gold Medallion and Retailers Choice.