Sunday, January 11, 2009

"You will have afflictions, but in Me you will have joy": A quote from St. Issac the Syrian

This is a quote selected by St. John the Hozevite (see: as being particularly beneficial for struggling Christians. It is quite sobering to me and my fellow sinners, and even if we are far from this state of the Saints, may we struggle to our end to reach the Kingdom of Heaven.

Icon of Jesus Christ "the Bridegroom" (Icon courtesy of used with permission)

From Homily 36 of St. Isaac the Syrian
"This is the will of the Holy Spirit, to be His beloved in continual reality. The Spirit of God does not dwell in those who live in rest because the Most-Good God wished that His beloved servants should not have rest in this life, but rather live in suffering, difficul
ties, worries, poverty, and nakedness, in solitude and debts, in sicknesses and defamations, in battles and crushing of heart, with sickly body and image detested by others, in a state which does not compare to other people's, and a lonely, peaceful, and quiet dwelling, completely invisible to men and free of anything that produces earthly consolation. Therefore, these people weep, and the world laughs; these sigh, but the world enjoys; these fast, but the world amuses itself. During the day, they wear themselves out; and, during the night, they prepare for deprivation. There are some who offer themselves to weariness voluntarily and also submit to afflictions; some are persecuted, while others were killed, and some hid in cellars. In them was fulfilled the word that says, "You will have afflictions, but in Me you will have joy," because the Lord knows that the ones who live in rest cannot remain in His love. Therefore, Christ the Saviour has prevented these from rest and satisfaction. He Whose love is more powerful than death of the body wanted to show also in us the power of His love. Amen."

St. Isaac the Syrian (his scroll reads: "Above all, love silence") (Icon courtesy of used with permission)

Through the prayers of our Holy Fathers, Lord Jesus Christ our God, have mercy on us and save us! Amen!

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