“Eros will have naked bodies; Friendship naked personalities.” from The Four Loves, C.S. Lewis
The word naked means nothing is being covered.
Physically, this can be no clothing. Spiritually, this could be bearing your soul to the Lord. Emotionally and personally, this can be covering nothing up about the truest form of oneself to a friend.
If we look at eros and nakedness, we see the passion that leads us to bear all, as God intended, with our spouse. It is the great writing of St. John Paul II that really says it best in Theology of the Body. He shows us that without any doubt, without any degree of perversion, without any question, God has everything to do with sex. God designed it, God intended it, God created it to be good. Naked bodies are found at the heart of the mystery of man. Our human sexuality is something made in His image. A coming together of two with the intention of the most sacred intimacy, with the opportunity to create another being that could come from that passion & desire for one another.
The result of that love would be the image of the Trinity.
So many say that this moment is the women’s most vulnerable moment, but although I am not a man, I beg to differ and say, this is ALSO man’s most vulnerable moment. You are not only physically naked, but you are naked in the sense that everything about you in this moment is accepted, acknowledged, given and received. The desire Our Lord has given us for the one we love lands us in the most intimate moments of our being… naked before one another… and completely loved for who we are. A true precursor to the moment we reach Heaven and are united with Our Lord… who will take us as we are even looking at our naked souls, no longer hiding behind anything.
In Hebrews 4, we read, “No creature is concealed from him, but everything is naked and exposed to the eyes of him to whom we must render an account.”
In the same sense, many of us have had a similar experience, not sexually, but emotionally and even maybe spiritually within friendships. We have certainly had moments where we were “naked” before our friends… vulnerable and sharing all our faults, our worries, our story. Or this may not even be a moment, but with some friends, the wholeness of the relationship. That each individual is able to truly be themself because the value and respect and love between the two individuals is such that all is well when everyone is their true self.
This for me, in my own life, is the heart of friendship.
Our “persons” if you will and our personalities, which make up the individual’s distinctive character, reveal who we are. I have found that sharing my struggles, showing off my messy house, telling a story of repentance, asking a friend to help me with a weakness, allowing someone to see me cry, asking someone for intimate prayers when I need them most, admitting that I need help and asking for it. These are some things that have grown my friendships the fastest and in the most beautiful ways. And vice versa, when a friend allows me in on any of these their truths and vulnerabilities within themselves.
So be naked.
Be naked in love with your spouse. Be naked before the Lord. Be naked in sharing who you really are within friendship. I see it as a true act of love in all the senses. No one cares for deception. No one cares for superficiality. No one cares for pretending. We are made for the true and sincere and genuine. We all want the naked truth. In the nakedness is where we find the heart of the Lord within each of us. When everything is shared in the light, there is no room for darkness and only room for love.