Miroslav Volf writes in Free of Charge
that when the Spirit of Christ indwells us, God occupies the space, of "I," so that Christ lives in and through us; the cooperation and intimacy between our spirit and God's spirit becomes so intimate that there is in some ways no distinction.When we love, it is truly God loving through us. When we will God's will, it is also God willing through us.
What does this have to do with self-love? Simply that when we love ourselves, it is God loving us through us.
It isn't even controversial to talk about showing someone else the love of God, or letting God love someone through our presence, our actions, our listening, our acceptance. But somehow when we apply this exact same theology to self-love we feel a little worried. Is it self-indulgent? Selfish? Shouldn't we make ourselves feel guilty for our failures so we can improve? Is God loving us through loving ourselves too close to saying that we are God?
Or sin of all sins, Is self-love New-Agey?
If it's wrong to allow God to love us through our own spirit-filled self-love, then let's be consistent: It's plain wrong to let God love others through our love. Trying to let Christ shine through us to others is too close to self-worship.
Or does loving self in God's Spirit actually lead to the death of ego and the birth of a renewed life?
Labels: Spiritual Formation, Theology