Three Viewpoints or Attitudes to Loving God
The FIRST ATTITUDE is necessary for salvation and for me to play any role at all in the Paschal Mystery. I must put myself entirely at God's good pleasure and be entirely ready to submit myself to observing his law to THE EXTENT THAT, not even if I were to be offered control of the whole world, nor even if I were otherwise put in danger of my life, would I ever deliberately do anything that would turn me totally away from God.
The SECOND ATTITUDE is more perfect than the first. It is a further and higher vision and a FREE AND INDEPENDENT ATTITUDE TOWARD affluence or poverty, toward being somehow in control of being disregarded, and toward the very shortness or length of life itself. I would, then, take any of these alternatives as long as it gave equal witness to God and were not the occasion of my playing a less effective role in the Paschal Mystery. And I would choose NONE OF THEM FOR ITS OWN SAKE, i.e., apart from God, a greater contribution to the cause of God, or apart from the prompting of the Holy Spirit regarding Christ in His members. It will be a life and death matter with me never to assent to any kind of moral failure, even in a less serious matter.
The THIRD ATTITUDE is the ideal of Christianity and presupposes that the two attitudes or mentalities already mentioned have been made part of one's life. From this viewpoint, according to God's will, I would make my own for the SAKE OF IDENTIFYING WITH CHRIST, poverty disregard, and a reputation of being a fool for Christ.
To sum of these three attitudes we can say:
This progression of love is a response to the world around us and takes
place on three different levels:
1. The first level is the beginning of the healing between God and us.
2. The level of indifference, or poised freedom, in order to enter more into accord with the world around me.
3. Perfect love ? the desiring of what Christ desired - a response of love that leaps ahead of intellectualization.
The key to opening this third door is to use the threefold dialogue of the Two Standards and beg from God the grace of this kind of all-out love.
1 Cor 4:10