... do not listen to vain and empty talk, in which the majority of world-loving people spend their time, and do not take pleasure in it. For the law says: 'You shall not raise false reports' (Ex. 23:1). Solomon says: 'Remove far from me vanity and lies' (Prov. 30:8). The Lord said: 'But I say to you, every idle word that men shall speak they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment' (Mt. 12:36).
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Total surrender to the will of God actually is sacrificing oneself as a burnt offering to God. The proof of this state is dying to oneself, - to one's own opinions, wishes and feelings or tastes, in order to live by Divine intellect, in conformity with the Divine will and in partaking of God. In the forefront of this endeavor is our Lord and Savior. He surrendered the whole of Himself to God the Father, and us in Himself, 'For we are members of His body, of His flesh, and of His bones' (Eph. 5:30). So let us hasten in His footsteps?
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Our Lord Christ Himself strikes down our enemies through us, or in company with us. For he who eats Christ's flesh and drinks His blood abides with Christ and He in him. Therefore, when we overcome the enemies, it is the blood of Christ which overcomes, as it is written in Revelation: 'and they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb'
We should feel with our whole heart that we have no one to rely on except God, and that from Him, and Him alone can we expect every kind of good, every manner of help, and victory. Since we are nothing, we can expect nothing of ourselves, except stumblings and falls, which make us relinquish all hope of ourselves. On the other hand, we are certain always to be granted victory by God, if we arm our heart with a living trust in Him and an unshakable certainty that we will receive His help.
... you must hasten to oppose pernicious pride of mind, before it penetrates into the marrow of your bones. Resist it, curb the quickness of your mind and humbly subject your opinion to the opinions of others. Be a fool for the love of God, if you wish to be wiser than Solomon: 'If any man among you seem to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise' (I Cor. 3:18).
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... if a man prays God for some virtue, and at the same time gives himself up to negligence, acquiring no definite means to gain this virtue, and making no effort towards it, truly this man tempts God, rather than prays. Thus the divine James says: 'The effectual prayer of a righteous man avails much' (Jms. 5:16). What avails to make prayer effective? is when, besides begging a saint to pray for him about something, the man also prays about it himself and with all diligence does everything necessary for obtaining his request.
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When you are offended or annoyed by others, do not allow your thoughts to dwell on them or on anything relating to them. For example, don't think that they ought not to have treated you so, being who they are, or whom they think themselves to be, or the like. All this is fuel and kindling of wrath, anger, and hatred.
The Lord said: 'Without Me you can do nothing' (Jn. 15:5). So for the duration of our life, every day and at every moment, we must keep unchanged in our heart the feeling, conviction and disposition, that on no occasion can we allow ourselves to think of relying on ourselves and trusting ourselves.
Humble patience, tirelessness and persistence in prayer conquer the unconquerable God and incline Him to mercy. According to the Lord's parable, the importunity of the widow inclined a wicked and unjust judge to grant her petition (cf. Lk. 18:1 ff.). The Lord gave this parable for a special purpose ? to teach us not to faint, but to pray patiently. If an unjust judge was persuaded to grant the petition of the widow, how can God fail to incline His ear to our prayers, if we persist in imploring Him since He is the essence of lovingkindness?
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Watch yourself with all diligence, lest the enemy steals near and robs you, depriving you of this great treasure, which is inner peace and stillness of soul. The enemy strives to destroy the peace of the soul, because he knows that when the soul is in turmoil it is more easily led to evil. But you must guard your peace.