Sunday, October 23, 2005

"In this life you have many sorrows"

"The spiritual way for the Christian broadly speaking presents itself like this: At the outset man is drawn to God by the gift of grace; and once attracted, a prolonged period of testing sets in. His freedom as a man and his trust in God are put to the test...At the initial stage of his conversion his prayers, urgent or not so urgent, are miraculously granted almost before they are uttered. But when the time of trial starts, everything alters. It seems as if heaven had closed up and become deaf to all our prayers. For the fervent Christian everything in life gets to be difficult. There is a change in people's attitude towards him - he is no longer respected. What is willingly forgiven others is held against him. His resistance to physical ills is lowered. Nature, circumstances, people-all turn against him. He finds no outlet for his natural talents, though they are no less valuable than other people's."

_Saint Silouan the Athonite_, by Archimandrite Sophrony (Sakharov), p. 200-201.

2 Comments:

Blogger Meg said...

Well, don't stop there! Where is this book available?

4:30 AM EDT  
Blogger Andrew Middleton said...

Glad you appreciated the quote, Meg...it is, perhaps, my favorite book...it's available through Saint Vladimir's Seminary Press in New York ( Saint Vladimir's )
, though I prefer the original Saint John the Baptist (Essex, UK) edition, although I believe it's the same text, the UK edition is hard-back and has a nicer feel to it.

10:14 PM EDT  

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