And yet, can we know God outside of loving God? We can know of God. We can know church dogma and doctrine and study the most respected theologians and know the scriptures inside and out but can we know God outside of loving God?
I wonder if Mary is the expert on this one. She did, to be sure, love God without knowing God as she bore God in her womb, in Jesus. She loved her child as a parent does before that child is even known. And it was a love borne of the desire to know. It was love borne of curiosity: what will this one be like? Perhaps that is the intersection of knowing and loving - curiosity. Anticipation. Wonder.
Advent is a time to explore these things. Do you desire to know God more fully? Do you desire to love God more fully? I don't know that studying the scriptures and reading up on the best theologians is going to satisfy the desire. Not to say that these things aren't important because they are. What I suspect, is that the mere desire in itself, pursued with a good dose of curiosity will do the trick. This Advent, may you lean into the curiosity and fall into the love.