the lover and the beloved

“In love, at least in the idea of agape as we find it in some parts of the New Testament, the lover affirms the reality and the otherness of the beloved. Love does not seek to collapse the beloved into terms of itself; and, even though it may speak of losing itself in the beloved, such a loss always turns out to be a true finding. In the familiar paradox, one becomes fully oneself when losing oneself to another. In the fact of love, in short, both parties are simultaneously affirmed. . . Love means attention: the readiness to let the other be the other, the willingness to grow and change in oneself in relation to the other.” (N.T. Wright, The New Testament and the People of God, p. 64)

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