I have a strong affinity for the fairy tale Beauty and the Beast in its many forms, as I’ve chronicled elsewhere. So I was pleased to read this quote by Chesterton highlighting a significant component of this timeless tale:
It appears to us that of all the fairy tales none contains so vital a moral truth as the old story, existing in many forms, of Beauty and the Beast. There is written, with all the authority of a human scripture, the eternal and essential truth that until we love a thing in all its ugliness we cannot make it beautiful.
Though it may be a dim flicker, the tale hints at the impartation of beauty to one bound as a beast, and the transformation that takes place through the highest of loves. So great the mercy of our beautiful God that he loved us in our worst, most hideous state, and freely bestowed upon us his beauty. Dwell on that miraculous transformation long enough, and awe for redemption will overtake your soul.