He can help us be more intentional with how we use the word, and appreciate how we experience it.
I wake up every morning like most of my millennial compatriots — swilling a cup of meticulously ground, measured, and uniquely brewed coffee (pour-over is my go-to). I “love” my coffee. I’m not alone; our entire culture has developed a semi-concerning infatuation with the beverage.
I’ve also been married for five years, and I’ve told my wife, Meghan, that I love her thousands of times. I travel just about every week and I always make sure to tell her I love her right before I head out the door. I also shoot her a quick text reminding her that I love her before taking off. But curiously, I’ve probably proclaimed my love for coffee just as often.
The Catholic theologian, author and speaker Dr. Edward Sri speaks often on this, describing our tendency to use the word “love” for the most benign things. Of course, I don’t have as strong an affection or desire for coffee as I do for my wife, but I constantly find myself lacking the eloquence to express myself in any different way.
The English language is so limited when it comes to those four letters, which have some of the biggest implications of any combination of letters in the history of the written or spoken word. And I fear that my all-too-human heart is just as limited. So, I’ve been trying to become more intentional in how I use the word and more appreciative of the many ways I experience it.
So I brewed a pot of coffee (the natural starting point of my inquiry), poured a cup and turned to my trusted friend, Clive Staples Lewis, for insight and guidance.