Monday, January 31, 2011

A Soul-Friend

“A person without a soul-friend is like a body without a head.”

- Saint Brigid of Kildare

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Faith and Knowledge

“I reply that in the case of disciples, faith precedes knowledge. But in our teaching, if any one asserts knowledge to come before faith, I make no objection.”

- Saint Basil

Saturday, January 29, 2011

A Prayer to God for Mercy

“We claim no right to mercy,
we do not deserve it,
We are sinners in everything,
in word and deed and thought
and in all our feelings.
But we are sorry and we pray to God
to be merciful to us sinners!’

If Your all-seeing eye sees
that our hearts are hard
and our resolution to do better is weak:
do You Yourself send us true contrition
and strengthen our sagging wills.
O God be merciful to us sinners!”

“We do not demand speedy deliverance,
we dare not say it will be a day,
a week, even a year;
but yielding wholly to thy will,
we make one prayer
‘God be merciful to us sinners.’

“We dare not murmur before You,
but are now in such pain
that we shrink from a touch,
as we cry like children in this pain,
we call” ‘God be merciful to us sinners!’


- Saint Theophan the Recluse

Friday, January 28, 2011

Food and Wonder

“Read the two Testaments which God has continued for the knowledge of the whole world, that by the power of his Divine Economy the [world] be provided with food in every generation and be enveloped in wonder.”

 - Saint Isaac of Syria

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Healing Anger

“And see what anger can do in a man; how indignant and noisy he becomes, how he swears, how he beats his head, trembling as in a fever....Man, learn the sickness of thy soul, for without acknowledgement of illness there is no healing....Christ alone can heal us, who sigh and pray to him with faith.”

- Saint Tikhon of Zadonsk

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Heavenly Things

 "The best moments on earth are those in which we meditate upon heavenly things, or when we recognize and defend the truth, which is of, and from, the heavens. Only then do we truly live. It is therefore vital to the soul that we should more often rise above the earth, and mount to heaven, where alone is our true life, our true country which shall have no end."

- Saint John of Kronstadt

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Be Peaceful

"Learn to be peaceful and thousands around you will be saved."

- Saint Seraphim of Sarov

Monday, January 24, 2011

Be Watchful

"Be watchful inwardly; and be watchful outwardly."

- Abba Poemen

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Pain of Heart

Pain of heart is the condition for spiritual growth and the manifestation of God’s power. Healings, etc., occur to those in desperation, hearts pained but still trusting and hoping in God’s help. This is when God acts. The absence of miracles today (almost) indicates lack of this pain of heart in man and even most Orthodox Christians—bound up with the ‘growing cold’ of hearts in the last times.”

- Father Seraphim Rose

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Sorrows and Joys

"Incidentally, do not be confused by sorrows or fear them. Sorrows and joys are closely bound up with each other. This may seem strange to you, but remember the words of the Savior: A woman when she is in travail hath sorrow, because her hour is come: but as soon as she is delivered of the child, she remembereth no more the anguish, for joy that a man is born into the world (John 16:21).Day turns to night, and night turns to day, bad weather turns to good; so also does sorrow turn into joy, and joy into sorrow."

- Saint Barsanuphius of Optina

Friday, January 21, 2011

Eternal Salvation

"The Orthodox faith is salvific; the Orthodox Church possesses everything needed to grant people salvation and eternal life. And salvation awaits us not only in the afterlife but already here, on earth...Many people today do not understand the very word ‘salvation' in the context of Christian message. ‘Why and from what should we be saved?' they ask. Now you know what you need to be saved from in this life. You know why the Orthodox faith is salvific—because the struggle for human souls ensues here on earth, and some come out winners, while others, losers. Losers are those who have failed to find the way to the true God, who have diverged onto a path of delusion, who have entrusted themselves to deceivers, schismatics, sectarians, false teachers, liars and other such people who temp human souls, depriving them of normal life here, on earth, and of eternal salvation in the future life."

- Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Paternal Providence

“When you fall down before God in prayer, become in your thought like an ant, like the creeping things of the earth, like a leech, and like a tiny lisping child. Do not say anything before Him with knowledge, but with a child's manner of thought draw near God and walk before Him, that you may be counted worthy of that paternal providence which fathers have for their small children. It has been said, 'The Lord preserveth the infants'.”

- Saint Isaac the Syrian

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Daily Testing

"The true Christian tests himself every day. Daily testing to see whether we have become better or worse, is so essential for us that without it we cannot be called Christians. Constantly and persistently we must take ourselves in hand. Do this: from the morning establish thoughts about the Lord firmly in your mind and then during the whole day resist any deviation from these thoughts. Whatever you are doing, with whomever you are speaking, whether you are going somewhere or sitting, let your mind be with the Lord. You will forget yourself, and stray from this path; but again turn to the Lord and rebuke yourself with sorrow. This is the podvig of spiritual attentiveness."

- Saint Theophan the Recluse