Thursday, November 29, 2007

Intimacy Separated from Love

The self is diminished, not fulfilled, when intimacy is separated from love.

To give our lives meaning, it is necessary to make commitments to each other. These define us. Mores and manners have everything to do with what distinguishes us as human. No amount of cultural programming (or pop culture propaganda) can ever deny that we have higher desires than those of the body.

When two people are in love and the man and woman are committed to each other (but not married) what makes sex wrong?
Well, first and foremost, remember 1st Thessalonians.

1 Thessalonians 4:3 - For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from unchastity.
If a man and woman love each other it makes sense that they want the best for each other. . . above all, it makes sense to want to help each other to heaven. It is a betrayal to say you love someone and NOT want eternal life for that person.

In contrast to this culture of mutual betrayal and exploitation is the Church's sacrament of marriage, in which husband and wife participate in the awesome self-donation of Christ and his Bride to one another in mutual love.

For the sexual act is the highest incarnation of self-giving in human experience. By it, we say with our bodies, "I give you all of myself." To say that, apart from the sacrament of marriage is, bluntly, to lie. Unchastity is the lie of self-giving incarnated in the act of taking: taking the dignity and love of the other while exploiting them for the sake of a physical or emotional sensation.

This post is a kalaidascope of thought from Words of Encouragement, Mark Shea and Jeff Cavins with lots of input from me!

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