He who loves God both believes truly and performs the works of faith reverently. But he who only believes and does not love, lacks even the faith he thinks he has; for he believes merely with a certain superficiality of intellect and is not energized by the full force of love’s glory. The chief part of virtue, then, is faith energized by love.
St. Diadochos of Photiki
Most men not only bear Satan’s burden willingly in their hearts, but they become so
accustomed to it that they often do not feel it, and even imperceptibly increase it. Sometimes, however, the evil enemy increases his burden tenfold, and then they become terribly despondent and fainthearted, they murmur and blaspheme God’s name. The usual means that men of our time take to drive away their anguish are–entertainments, cards, dancing, and theatres. But such means afterwards increase still more the anguish and weariness of their hearts. If, happily, they turn to God, then the burden is removed from their heart, and they clearly see that previously the heaviest burden was lying on their heart, though frequently they did not feel it. O, how many men there are who have “forsaken [God] the Fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no [living] water”!
Men have very many such broken cisterns–nearly everybody has his own. The
broken cisterns are our hearts, our passions.
St. John of Kronstadt
Meekness has its source in humility. In banishing pride from the heart, we have no more occasion for anger, no more of the false refinements which so strongly make us feel the offenses committed against us.
St. Gregory of Nyssa
All men are made in God’s image; but to be in His likeness is granted only to those who through great love have brought their own freedom into subjection to God. For only when we do not belong to ourselves do we become like Him who through love has reconciled us to Himself. No one achieves this unless he persuades his soul not to be distracted by the false glitter of this life.
St. Diadochos of Photiki
“Prayer is food for the soul. Do not starve the soul, it is better to let the body go hungry. Do not judge anyone, forgive everyone. Consider yourself worse than everyone in the world and you will be saved. As much as possible, be more quiet.”
St. Joseph of Optina
When sorrows shake our souls, our hearts treble and our thoughts are confused, our only refuge is the Lord.
St. Nikon of Optina
The soul that loves God has its rest in God and in God alone. In all the paths that men walk in in the world, they do not attain peace until they draw nigh to hope in God.
St. Isaac the Syrian