Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Μη φοβού, μηδέ δειλιάτω η καρδία σου, ο Χριστός μας αοράτως σε βοηθεί κρυφία χειρί... ( Γέροντας Εφραίμ Φιλοθεΐτης )

Μη φοβού, μηδέ δειλιάτω η καρδία σου, ο Χριστός μας αοράτως σε βοηθεί κρυφία χειρί, σε δοκιμάζει δια να σου δώση την χάριν Του.
Όσον γεωργείται η γη της καρδίας και όσον πιο βαθειά ο γεωργός βάζει το αλέτρι, τόσον περισσότερον καρπόν θα δώση το χωράφι εις τον καιρόν του. Ούτω κάνει και ο μέγας γεωργός, ο Θεός, την ψυχήν μας. Μας αφήνει να έρχονται πειρασμοί και θλίψεις και πόνος και στενοχωρία, να εισέρχωνται βαθειά εις την καρδίαν και πολλάκις να ευρισκώμεθα εις αδιέξοδον, το πώς θα τα καταφέρωμεν με αυτόν ή εκείνον τον πειρασμόν, και πάσχει και οδυνάται ο άνθρωπος, αλλά εις τους αγαπώντας τον Θεόν, συνεργεί ο Θεός να γίνωνται εις αγαθήν έκβασιν.

Γέροντας Εφραίμ Φιλοθεΐτης

Ignorance, my child, is known as the soul’s death....

Ignorance, my child, is known as the soul’s death. Ignorance does not enlighten a sick person; it does not say to him: “Your illness is the will of God, and you ought to pass through it with patience and thankfulness, so that you will not become a transgressor before God with your impatience!” To the enlightened Christian, however, knowledge of God’s will not only makes him bear everything with thankfulness, but also helps him acquire a strong spiritual constitution and at the same time obtain the refreshment of consolation. He reflects: “By undergoing these pains and afflictions I am doing God’s will, and this will bring about the forgiveness of my previous offences. By paying here the debt of my sentence, I shall receive my freedom there in the life to come, where I shall live eternally—whereas here, no matter how much suffering I may undergo, it is temporary and short-lived”. So my child, we need patience so as not to be condemned with the unrepentant world. Regardless of what might happen to us, through patience everything is put aright, and the inner man will find peace, bearing patiently what God has allowed. Bear your cross, and I shall bear mine, as we follow the heavenly Bridegroom, Christ, Who for us ungrateful sinners bore a Cross of disgrace. What do we bear that is equal in worth to such good things that we enjoy from God? If I were to enumerate the blessings of God and the ingratitude of man, I think my mind would stop; for how can the finite mind comprehend the infinite benefactions of God towards man?

Elder Ephraim of Arizona