Which medicine brought about spiritual rebirth to the souls of men? Was it not the gigantic Cross of our Lord Jesus? If the Lord had not died on the Cross, man could not have been saved in any other way. Jesus became a model for us by bearing His Cross. He showed thus that whoever wants to be saved must follow Him, endure the cross which the Lord will lay upon him according to his strength, ascend to Golgotha, be crucified together with Jesus, and then be glorified together with the Lord in the Kingdom of God. Elder Ephraim
Elder Ephraim of Philotheou and Arizona
If the Lord Himself, the omnipotent and sinless One, carried a cross for the sake of man, for his salvation, how much more so do we sinners, who sin every hour, need a cross for our salvation? We must always be ready to endure without grumbling every trial that the holy Hand of the Physician will send us. Since this trial comes from and is permitted by Him Who loves us boundlessly, the trial will absolutely never be for our harm, for after it is over we shall see its good result, we shall see God’s main purpose. The Lord Jesus, foreseeing the future trials of His followers, gave them support by saying, ‘By your patience possess your souls. He who endures to the end will be saved.’ Luke 21:19, Mt. 10:22
By enduring your illness with patience, you are also counted among the beloved children of God. Your burden will one day become your resurrection; your sorrows, joy; your patience, eternal life!
Cry out with thankfulness to the Lord: “Blessed be the name of the Lord. As it seemed good to the Lord, so has it come to pass. Glory to God for everything.” Job 1:21 As you cry out like this, your soul will be filled with joy and peace, and at the same time you will strengthen yourself in patience.
Do not look forward in fear to those changes in life, rather look to them with full hope, that as they arise, God whose very own you are, will lead you safely through all things and when you cannot stand it, He will care you in His arms. Do not fear what may happen tomorrow, the same everlasting Father, who cared for you today will take care of you then and every day. God will either shield you from all suffering or will give you unfailing strength to bear it.
Be at Peace.
Put aside all anxious thoughts and imaginations.
+ Glory to God for All Things +
“Grief will succeed joy, and joy, grief, just as night follows day. This is how the Father of lights has established the path of those who are being saved. Just have patience and hope: engrave these in the depths of your heart-with these, all adversities will be faced.”
Blog Post: Excerpt taken from: Counsels from the Holy Mountain: Selected from the Letters and Homilies of Elder Ephraim
Saint Anthony's Monastery - Arizona