Thursday, September 5, 2019

Patience is needful and a product of Faith

In our daily life we encounter many temptations and difficulties. Sometimes it is difficult to think about God and acknowledge His never ending  love. All these trials and tribulations seek to divert us from a God-pleasing life following His commandments. Because of this, the path is described as narrow and difficult. The only way a faithful person can remain on this path is to have patience.

Saint Theophan says,
Patience overcomes misfortunes and patience withstands temptations. It is the foundation of a life that is unquestioning and always faithful to God’s commandments. Without patience not a step can be taken on that path.
The mother of patience, he says, is faith. This is a faith that firmly believes that everything we encounter comes from God or is allowed by Him. He has promised that He will not give us more than we are capable of handling if we only trust in Him. Everything we encounter is part of the path necessary for our perfection in Him.

Saint Theophan says,
If with God’s permission some temptations do occur, this is only to let us overcome that which draws us towards sin and receive the crown of righteousness for our strong devotion to the Lord’s commandments. Therefore, just endure this time of temptations, and that which seems so heavy will bring joy here, and prepare the ointment for eternal joy there, Believers have this kind of patience.
This kind of patience demonstrates our true faith and shows that it is God’s power working actively in our heart. 

Saint Theophan says,
Patience gives steadiness in goodness; and this steadiness makes faultless all the efforts of the enemies, and tears all their nets. Steadiness itself is a fruit of God’s power, which has settled in the heart for its dedication to God.
Prophet David demonstrates the faith and patience. He writes,
Sinners have set a snare for me, yet from Thy commandment have I not strayed (Psalm 118:110).

Reference: Psalm 118: A Commentary by Saint Theophan the Recluse, p248.

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