Sunday, December 1, 2013
Abba Zeno said, "If you want God to hear your prayer quickly, then before you pray for anything else, even your own soul, when you stand and stretch out your hands towards God, you must pray with all your heart for your enemies. Through this action God will hear everything that you ask."
A hermit said, "Take care to be silent. Empty your mind. Attend to your meditation in the fear of God, whether you are resting or at work. If you do this, you will not fear the attacks of the demons."
Abba Moses, "Sit in thy cell and thy cell will teach thee all."
Abba Agathon said, "A man who is angry, even if he were to raise the dead, is not acceptable to God."
Somebody asked Anthony, 'What shall I do in order to please God?' He replied, 'Do what I tell you, which is this: wherever you go, keep God in mind; whatever you do, follow the example of Holy Scripture; wherever you are, stay there and do not move away in a hurry. If you keep to these guide-lines, you will be saved.'"
Abbot Pastor, "If someone does evil to you, you should do good to him, so that by your good work you may drive out his malice."
Abba Isidore said, "If you fast regularly, do not be inflated with pride, but if you think highly of yourself because of it, then you had better eat meat. It is better for a man to eat meat than to be inflated with pride and to glorify himself."
Dorotheos of Gaza: "It is no great thing not to judge, and to be sympathetic to someone who is in trouble and falls down before you, but it is a great thing not to judge or to strike back when someone, on account of his own passions, speaks against you. Likewise, it is a great thing not to disagree when someone else is honored more than you are."
A brother came to see Abba Poemen and said to him, "Abba, I have many thoughts and they put me in danger." The old man led him outside and said to him, "Expand your chest and do not breathe in." He said, "I cannot do that." Then the old man said to him, "If you cannot do that, no more can you prevent thoughts from arising, but you can resist them."
It happened that as Abba Arsenius was sitting in his cell that he was harassed by demons. His servants, on their return, stood outside his cell and heard him praying to God in these words, "O God, do not leave me. I have done nothing good in your sight, but according to your goodness, let me now make a beginning of good.'"