Gleanings from Orthodox Christian Authors and the Holy Fathers


3 Entries

The Lord did not require ten talents from him who had received only two; and as He distributed them according to the strength of each, so He also collected them according to the strength of their upbringing. And we, as merciless torturers of each other, often ask from our fellow creatures that which we cannot even fulfill ourselves, and certainly would not have fulfilled if we had been in their place. And so, seek any correction first of all in yourself; and when with the help of God's blessing you attain this in proportion to your strength, then surely you will see your fellow favorable, good and kind: "First cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye (Matt. 7:5)." Abbess Thaisia, Letters to a Beginner

To him who has been baptized into Christ grace has been mysteriously given already. But it acts in proportion to his fulfillment of commandments. Although this grace never ceases to help us in secret, it lies in our power to do or not to do good according to our own will.

In the first place, it fittingly arouses conscience, through which even evil-doers have been accepted by God when they repented.

Again, it may be concealed in the advice of a brother. Sometimes it follows thought during reading and teaches its truth to the mind by means of a natural deduction (from that thought). Thus, if we do not bury this talent bestowed upon us on these and similar occasions, we shall in truth enter into the joy of the Lord. St. Mark the Ascetic, "Early Fathers From the Philokalia," trans. by E. Kadloubovsky and G.E.H. Palmer, (London: Faber and Faber, Ltd., 1981), pp. 86 - 90

221. He who is easily overcome by the lesser will inevitably be enslaved by the greater. But he who is superior to the lesser will also with the Lord's help resist the greater. REF:Saint Kosmas Aitolos +1779

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