Q2014: Father Bruno Shah Defines Love
Love never fails. — 1 Corinthians 13.8
Given our experiences of what it means to love and to be loved, how can we confidently say Love never fails? Love shames and even abuses us (because we are all sinners). As a result, our popular culture has begun to give up on love.
Bruno Mars uses theological language in his song “Locked out of Heaven”. He frames a failure of love as a religious problem. What’s fascinating is pop culture’s appropriation of theological language.
Our romantic imagination must be redeemed.
Shah works through the Scriptures, exploring Salvation metaphors used by several biblical authors. Salvation resources itself based on the conjugal relationship between a man and woman. Every salvific account avails itself of nuptial romantic union.
We are called to be encouraged about romance and love.
God is love, but love is not God. Because our understanding of Love must be rescued, redeemed.
God breaks into our life to show us love through the person and work of his son. It doesn’t cancel our loves but restores and reimagines them. Jesus takes on himself the failure of human love: betrayal.
We must love just as he loved. We need to gift of the Spirit to animate our lives, to make us like Christ, to turn us toward the kingdom of the father.
We need to be equipped, capacitated to love, to accomplish God’s will on earth. We need virtue – that which establishes the flourishing the human good. The common good is the accumulation of all that allows for and promotes virtue.
Our popular entertainment capitalizes on technology and sensualization. We must be wary of how we import these into our worship.
It’s in our worship we give glory to God and are trained to be men and women of self-sacrificial love. It must be ecstatic and sensual, but also contemplative and ascetic.