Aug 22, 12
Read from August 05 to 21, 2012
Lewis does an excellent job in this essay of explaining the characteristics of what he calls “The Four Loves.” One of the overarching themes of the book is that all four loves (affection, friendship, romantic and Charity) cannot exist in and of themselves. Each love is dependent upon a facet of another to thrive. Lewis also draws the readers’ attention to the dangers and short comings of each love. Even a love such as affection can become a “god” or a “demon” as he describes it, if left to its own selfish devices.
Consequently, Lewis points out that all forms of love, including Need, Gift and Appreciative love are sourced in the ultimate love, Charity. It is because of the love of God that we can experience any other form of love. The idea that made me most excited came in the Charity chapter. Lewis explains that our forms of love are reflections of Ultimate love. Although they are Natural and fallen, they can be not replaced by Charity, but redeemed and transformed into its image: “The natural loves are summoned to become modes of Charity while also remaining the natural loves they were.” and, “Charity does not dwindle into merely natural love but natural love is taken up into, made the tuned and obedient instrument of Love Himself.” As we grow in Christlikeness, our loves can become reflections of Ultimate love for His glory.
I would definitely recommend reading the "The Four Loves." Even though all of the chapters crescendo to the final one on Charity, the chapters on Friendship and Charity are the two that are well worth reading, if nothing else.