Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Selected Quotes of the Fathers on Hope and Patience

Christ carrying His Cross to Golgotha (Source: www.eikonografos.com)

Selected Quotes of the Fathers on Patience
"Trials are of two kinds. Either affliction will test our souls as gold is tried in a furnace, and make trial of us through patience, or the very prosperity of our lives will oftentimes, for many, be itself an occasion of trial and temptation. For it is equally difficult to keep the soul upright and undefeated in the midst of afflictions, as to keep oneself from insolence and pride in prosperity.”
St. Basil the Great – “I Will Pull Down My Barns” (The Sunday Sermons of the Great Fathers)

"Show patience, and there will be peace.”
St. Anatoly of Optina – “A Collection of Letters to Nuns”

"When patience greatly increases in our soul, it is a sign that we have secretly received the grace of consolation. The power of patience is stronger than the joyful thoughts that descend into the heart.”
St. Isaac the Syrian – “Ascetical Homilies” (Homily Forty-Eight)

"...It is patience that both commends us to God, and saves us for God. It is that same patience which tempers anger, bridles the tongue, governs the mind, guards peace, rules discipline, breaks the onslaught of lust, suppresses the violence of pride, extinguishes the fire of dissension, restrains the power of the wealthy, renews the endurance of the poor in bearing their lot, guards the blessed integrity of virgins, the difficult chastity of widows, and the indivisible love of husbands and wives. It makes men humble in prosperity, brave in adversity, meek in the face of injuries and insults. It teaches us to pardon our offenders quickly; if you yourself should offend, it teaches you to ask pardon often and with perseverance. It vanquishes temptations, sustains persecutions, endures sufferings and martyrdoms to the end. It is this patience which strongly fortifies the foundations of our faith. It is this patience which sublimely promotes the growth of hope. It directs our action, so that we can keep to the way of Christ while we make progress because of his forbearance. It ensures our perseverance as sons of God while we imitate the patience of the Father.”
St. Cyprian of Carthage – “The Good of Patience”

“...In proportion to your humility you are given patience in your woes; and in proportion to your patience the burden of your afflictions is made lighter and you will find consolation; in proportion to your consolation, your love of God increases; and in proportion to your love, your joy in the Holy Spirit is magnified. Once men have truly become His sons, our tenderly compassionate Father does not take away their temptations from them when it is His pleasure to 'make for them a way to escape' (1 Cor. 10:13), but instead He gives His sons patience in their trials. All these good things are given into the hand of their patience for the perfecting of their souls.”
St. Isaac the Syrian - "Ascetical Homilies" (Homily Forty-Two)

“Ask with tears, seek with obedience, knock with patience. For thus he who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.”
St. John Climacus – "The Ladder of Divine Ascent" (Step 28)

“Do not be surprised that you fall every day; do not give up, but stand your ground courageously. And assuredly, the angel who guards you will honour your patience.”
St. John Climacus - "The Ladder of Divine Ascent" (Step 5)

"Do not be cast down over the struggle- the Lord loves a brave warrior. The Lord loves the soul that is valiant"
St. Siloan the Athonite

"...And so let us be glad and bear with patience everything the world throws at us, secure in the knowledge that it is then that we are most in the mind of God."
St. Basil the Great - "Gateway to Paradise"

"Hope also requires a life corresponding to the hope."
St. John of Kronstadt - My Life in Christ

"Tribulations worketh patience, and patience probation, and probation hope, " (Rom. 5:3,4). And even as the violence of the wind, when it rushes upon strong trees, and sways them in all directions, does not root them up, but renders them still firmer and stronger by these attacks; so the soul that is holy, and lives in a religious state, is not supplanted by the inroads of trial and tribulation, but stimulated thereby to more patience; even as the blessed Job, whom they made more illustrious and honourable."
St. John Chrysostom - "Concerning the Statutes"

"Prayer breathes hope..."
St. John of Kronstadt - My Life in Christ

"When you pray, bring to mind the ploughman who sows in hope. He Who causes to return twofold the seed that the ploughman sows with hope, Who has esteemed the seeking of His kingdom and His righteousness to be greater than temporal things, He himself will reward your entreaty according to His promise."
St. Isaac the Syrian - "Ascetical Homilies" (Homily Twenty-Five)

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

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