“The outflow of the Spirit depends upon death to self.” -Donald Gee
Phil replies on Facebook:
I usually know when the Spirit is at work because it's the direct opposite of what I think I would want or desire. It also speaks to me when the message is in opposition to the things of this world like money, security, luxury, etc.
Oh yeah...whenever I have a knee-jerk reaction to something I know it is time to re-think my position...
Rather than "death to self," "life to self" - that is, the self choosing G-d's life. G-d does not want us merely to vacate and become a finger-puppet for the divine; G-d wants us to become better us's, in communion with him. This takes more than pulling the trigger. This takes ongoing active investment of our selves. Let the self live to receive the spirit.
I am inclined to agree with you, Emmet (hi, nice ta meetcha!)Death to self-will, not self itself. I hear in Christian teaching and lyrics all the time the prayer to "disappear." But I wonder if that is really God's heart. God wanted us to be ourselves enough to give us the gift of free will. That suggests to me that there is a wholesome, holy self we are to lay hold of. I wonder if we are afraid of the freedom to be ourselves?