Ἀφιερωμένο στόν Κύριό μας Ἱησοῦ Χριστό καί τήν Ὑπεραγία Θεοτόκο
“Vouchsafe us, O Lord, to live this day without sin.”Elder Sophrony(Sakharov) of Essex
Elder Sophrony(Sakharov) of Essex
“I have been wearing a cassock for sixty years, but whenever I meet an Orthodox Christian or any other person, I bow my head low before him.” (Thereby the Elder wished to indicate that he feels himself to be the most unworthy.)
Let the whole world dismiss us as unworthy of attention, trust or respect – it will not matter provided that the Lord accept us.
And vice versa: it will profit us nothing if the whole world thinks well of us and sings our praises, if the Lord declines to abide with us.
This is only a fragment of the freedom Christ meant when He said, “Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8.32).
Our sole care will be to continue in the word of Christ, to become His disciples and cease to be servants of sin.
“Vouchsafe us, O Lord, to live this day without sin.” We pray thus in the morning. But only the gentle presence of the Divine Spirit within us affords us the possibility of continuing sober in spirit…. If our prayers are to lead to results like those of which our Fathers and teachers spoke so rapturously, it is essential that we follow their teaching. The first condition is belief in Christ. The second, to acknowledge ourselves as sinners. This perception can reach such depths that one feels oneself worse than all other men; and this is obvious to us not because of our outer behavior but because we see how distanced we are from God…. The more we humble ourselves in painful repentance, the more rapidly our prayer reaches God. When, though, we lose humility, no ascetic striving will help us. The action in us of pride, criticism of our brethren, self-exalting and hostility towards our neighbor, thrusts us away from the Lord.