Gleanings from Orthodox Christian Authors and the Holy Fathers


9 Entries

Have courage, faith, hope and love in God patience unto the end, to gain your immortal soul which the whole world is not equal to. REF:Elder Joseph (trans. from Greek by Elizabeth Theokritoff), "Elder Joseph the Hesychast," (Mount Athos: The Great and Holy Monastery of Vatopaidi, 1999), pp. 195 - 198

...the chief thing that every man needs is endurance, just as the earth needs water. On this earth he should lay the foundation of faith (cf. 2 Pet. 1:5). Then discrimination, like an experienced builder, can set about slowly building the house of the soul with clay taken from the earth of humility, successively binding one stone to another - that is, one virtue to another - until the roof, which is perfect love, is put in place. Then, when it has posted good doorkeepers, always bearing arms - that is to say, luminous thoughts and godlike actions capable of protecting the king from being disturbed - the master of the house comes and takes up residence in it. St. Peter of Damaskos (Book 1: A Treasury of Divine Knowledge, The Philokalia Vol. 3 pgs 181-182):

Because we do not believe, endurance is far from us. St Ephrem the Syrian, 'To the Monks in Egypt", 9th Exhortation,

No matter what misfortune might befall you, no matter what unpleasantness might occur, say “I will endure this for Jesus Christ’s sake!” Just say that, and you will feel better, for the Name of Jesus Christ is powerful. Before It, all difficulties abate, and demons disappear. Your annoyance and faintness of heart will abate when you repeat His most sweet Name. Lord, grant unto me to see my transgressions. Lord, grant unto me patience, magnanimity, and meekness. Counsels of Venerable St. Antony (Putilov) of Optina

...God has shown how close He is to those who are willing to endure trials for His sake, and who will not abandon virtue out of cowardice because of the suffering involved, but cleave to the law of God by patiently enduring what befalls them, rejoicing in the hope of salvation. St. Peter of Damaskos (Twenty-Four Discourses no. 5, The Philokalia Vol. 3 pg. 223)

Endurance is like an unshakeable rock in the winds and waves of life. However the tempest batters him, the patient man remains steadfast and does not turn back; and when he finds relief and joy, he is not carried away by self-glory: he is always the same, whether things are hard or easy, and for this reason, he is proof against the snares of the enemy. St. Peter of Damaskos (Twenty-Four Discourses no. 5, The Philokalia Vol. 3 pg. 224)

It is always possible to make a new start by means of repentance. 'For a righteous man may fall seven times And rise again' (Prov. 24:16). And if you fall again, then rise again, without despairing at all of your salvation, no matter what happens. So long as you do not surrender yourself willingly to the enemy, your patient endurance, combined with self-reproach, will suffice for your salvation. 'For we ourselves were also once foolish, disobedient,'says St. Paul, '...not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us' (Tit. 3:3,5). St. Peter of Damaskos.

Patient endurance kills the despair that kills the soul; it teaches the soul to take comfort and not to grow listless in the face of its many battles and afflictions. St. Peter of Damaskos (Book 2: Twenty-Four Discourses no. 5, The Philokalia Vol. 3 pg. 222)

The patient endurance of the saints exhausts the evil power that attacks them, since it makes them glory in sufferings undergone for the sake of truth.

Philokalia, Vol. 2, Fourth Century on Various Texts, No. 93

Redeeming the Time

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