I’ve started to read Mere Christianity many times. For years, in fact. I don’t think I’ve ever read the book in its entirety. Ever. Not because it’s boring. Far from it. Lewis just causes you to think a lot about what he is writing, and I’ve rarely had the stamina to bulldoze my way through it all. But I’m trying again, and this time I think I can read it all the way through.
Of course, It’ll help that I’m joining in on a Bible study this week that happens to be going through the book. I’m not sure why, but I kind of feel refreshed by the idea of studying a book other than the Bible. It seems like that’s all I’ve ever done in small groups I’ve joined in the past. The Bible is full of history, wisdom, and eyewitness accounts of Jesus, but I refuse to believe that God just stopped speaking through people after the 2nd Century AD. I’m not saying that someone like C.S. Lewis should be considered authoritative, but rather that God can teach us things even through the words or brushstrokes of contempory authors and artists as well as Scripture.
Anyway, I’m a little over halfway through the book on my Kindle. I just finished the chapters on marriage and forgiveness. The former was interesting to read, as Lewis had not yet met Joy at the time. He was speaking as a bachelor about love and marriage, and he got on to talking about the promise of marriage:
“And, of course, the promise, made when I am in love because I am in love, to be true to the beloved as long as I live, commits me to being true even if I cease to be in love. A promise must be about things that I can do, about actions: no one can promise to go on feeling a certain way. He might as well promise never to have a headache or always to feel hungry.” ~C.S. Lewis
Clearly, Lewis didn’t have any delusions whatsoever about marriage. He may not have had knowledge from experience yet, but he knew the difference between “being in love” and “loving” someone.
As to how this pertains to my life, I’m logging it all away to recall whenever I get married. Just because I’m a bachelor doesn’t mean I’m not interested in this stuff!
I’ll probably be quoting more from Mere Christianity for the next week or so, so stay tuned!