All Spiritual Counsels
- YES I DO WANT TO BE SAVED
- WHY SILENCE? WHY THE DESERT?
- WHY SHOULD WE FAST?
- WHY DO MY PRAYERS FOR HELP IN MY DAILY STRUGGLE REMAIN UNANSWERED?
- WHO IS OUR VENERABLE FATHER ARSENIOS OF CAPPADOCIA, THE WONDERWORKER?
- WHICH IS BETTER - THE WAY OF MARY OR THE WAY OF MARTHA?
- USELESS KNOWLEDGE AND IDLE CURIOSITY
- THE WORD OF GOD
- THE VALUE OF MATERIAL THINGS
- THE SECRET TO OBTAINING THE GRACE OF GOD
- THE PRIEST WHO DID NOT WANT TO SERVE THE DIVINE LITURGY
- THE IMPORTANCE OF PLACE IN THE SPIRIUTAL LIFE
- THE GREATEST MISSION OF THE CHURCH IS THE DIVINE LITURGY
- THE EVIL ONE WARS AGAINST SPIRITUAL STRUGGLERS
- THE BROTHER WHO WAS SAVED WITHOUT EFFORT BECAUSE HE DIDN'T JUDGE
- THE BENEFITS OF ALMSGIVING - AN AMAZING MIRACLE
- THE ATHEIST STUDENT WHO VISITED MOUNT ATHOS
- SOMETIMES EVEN THE DEVIL TELLS THE TRUTH
- SLEEPINESS AND PRAYER
- SINS AND PASSIONS
- SIN - DESPAIR - REPENTANCE
- SHOULD I OR SHOULD I NOT REVEAL MY THOUGHTS TO ANOTHER?
- SEEK NOT THE PRAISES OF MEN
- SAYINGS BY ABBA AMMONAS
- PRAYER AND FASTING
- ON JUDGING PRIESTS
- ON JUDGING
- OF WHAT DOES THE SPIRITUAL SEARCH CONSIST?
- MIRACULOUS SIMPLICITY OF AN ATHONITE ELDER
- MALICE - PRAYER AND ASCETICISM
- LIGHT AND DARKNESS IN THE SOUL
- JESUS AS THE NEW ADAM
- IS REPENTANCE AND VIRTUE FOR LAY PEOPLE?
- IS FASTING NECESSARY? ASK THE DEMONS!
- HUMILITY - THE FOUNDATION OF ALL VIRTUES
- FREEDOM THAT ALTERS
- FAITH AND WORKS
- DOES THE DEVIL REALLY EXIST?
- DEALING WITH SPIRITUAL DEPRESSION AND ANXIETY
- COMBATING DESPAIR
- BEFORE THE NEW TESTAMENT WAS THE DIVINE LITURGY
- BE THANKFUL TO GOD FOR EVERYTHING
- BE AT PEACE WITH YOUR OWN SOUL
- AUTHENTIC HUMILITY
- ATTACHMENT TO EARTHLY THINGS MAKE US FOREIGN TO HEAVENLY THINGS
- ADVICE FOR PARENTS FROM AN ELDER
- ABBA SISOES AT THE TOMB OF ALEXANDER THE GREAT
- A PRISONER, A SHIPWRECKED SAILOR AND THE DIVINE LITURGY
- A NEW SAINT DECALRED
IS REPENTANCE AND VIRTUE FOR LAY PEOPLE?
- Categorized in: Spiritual Counsels
It is possible for all men, not only for monks but for laymen as well, to be penitent at all times and constantly, and to weep and entreat God, and by such practices to acquire all other virtues as well.
St John Chrysostom, the great pillar and doctor of the Church, bears witness with me. In his discourse on David, as he expounds on the Fiftieth Psalm, he asserts that this is possible for one who has wife and children, men and women servants, a large household, and great possessions, and who is prominent in worldly affairs. Not only is he able daily to weep and pray and repent, but he can also attain to perfection of virtue if he so wishes. He can receive the Holy Spirit and become a friend of God and enjoy the vision of Him.
Such men before Christ's coming were Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Lot at Sodom, and (to pass over the rest who are too many to enumerate) Moses and David. Under the new grace and dispensation of our God and Saviour, Peter, the unlettered fisherman who had a mother-in-law and other relatives, proclaimed the God who had been revealed.
Who could count those others, more numerous than the rain drops (Sirach 1:21) and the stars of heaven (Genesis 15:5), kings, rulers, prominent men, not to mention poor people and those in moderate circumstances? They have cities and houses and the sanctuaries of churches, which they have built with liberality; their homes for the aged and hospices for strangers remain and exist to this day. All the things they acquired during their lifetime they used with piety, not as though they owned them, but rather like servants of the Master who administers what He has entrusted to them according to His pleasure and who will, as Apostle Paul says, 'deal with the world as though they had no dealings with it' (1 Corinthians 7:31).
For this reason they have become glorious and illustrious even in this present life, and now and to endless ages they will become even more glorious and illustrious in the kingdom of God. If instead of being timid, slothful, and despisers of God's commandments, we were zealous, watchful, and sober, we should have no need of renunciation or tonsure or flight from the world.
St Symeon the New Theologian