Who will help me?

To a certain very sick brother who had various bad thoughts as to who will take care of his needs.

In the name of Jesus Christ, my brother, let us not have anything against our neighbor, for we should overcome and cover this with love. No one says to his neighbor, "Why don't you love me?" But he himself, making himself worthy of love, attracts also his neighbor to love. And concerning the needs of the body, I will say that if someone is worthy of comfort, then God will instruct the heart of a Saracen to show him mercy according to his need; if he is not worthy, or if for his instruction it is not useful for him to be consoled, then even if he were to create an new heaven and a new earth, he would not find repose. And what you said about burdening your brother is apparently a self-justification; for no one, in helping his neighbor who desires salvation, in order to fulfill the commandment of God, will say to him, "I burden you." He who hates those who upset him hates meekness, and he who flees from those who offend him, flees from repose in Christ. May the man-loving God cover us, my son, by His grace, through the prayers of all the saints. Amen.

Abba Dorotheos

Let us be heedful

Let us take a care for ourselves, O brethren, let us be heedful. Who will give us this time back if we lose it in vain? In truth we will seek these days and not find them. Abba Arsenius always used to say to himself, "Arsenius, why did you leave the world?" And we find ourselves in such ruinous sloth that we are not even conscious of what we then desired, and therefore we not only make no progress, but we constantly grieve. This occurs in us because we do not have heedfulness in our heart. And truly, if we only wanted to labor a little, we would grieve little and not suffer difficulties.

Irritability and remembrance of evil

If you do not wish to fall into irritability and remembrance of evil, have no attachment whatever to things and do not be overly concerned for them, neither despise them as being of little importance or insignificance. When someone asks something of you, give it to him; and if he by chance, or by carelessness, should break or lose something, do not be grieved. You should act this way

A wise man builds his dwelling upon a rock

The scripture speaks of the midwives who did not kill the children of Israel of the male sex, that as the midwives feared God, they established for themselves dwellings (Ex. 1:21). Are they tangible dwellings that are spoken of here? And what does it mean to build house for oneself according to the fear of God? We do the contrary: we are taught to leave even those houses we already have for the sake of the fear of God. The scripture speaks here not of tangible dwellings but of the house of the soul, which a man builds for himself by observing God's commandments.

Prepare your soul for temptation

Well did Abba Poemen say that the advancement of a monk is revealed in temptations; for a monk who truly undertakes to work for the Lord should, as the wise Sirach says, prepare his soul for temptation (Sir. 2:1), so that he will never be astonished nor despair at anything that happens to him, believing that nothing happens without the providence of God. And whatever is God's providence is completely good and serves for the profit of the soul, for everything that God does with us He does for our benefit, for He love us and has mercy on us. And we should, as the Apostle has said, give thanks always for all things (Eph. 5:20, I Thes. 5:18) to His

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"As the Prophets saw, as the Apostles taught, as the Church has received, as the Teachers express in dogma, as the inhabited world understands together with them, as grace illumines, as the truth makes clear, as error has been banished, as wisdom makes bold to declare, as Christ has assured, so we think, so we speak, so we preach, honoring Christ our true God, and his Saints, in words, in writings, in thoughts, in sacrifices, in churches, in icons, worshiping and revering the One as God and Lord, and honoring them because of their common Lord as those who are close to him and serve him, and making to them relative veneration. This is the faith of the Apostles; this is the faith of the Fathers; this is the faith of the Orthodox; this faith makes fast the inhabited world."
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