Prayer is the breathing of the soul, just as air is the natural breathing of the body. We
breathe by the Holy Ghost. You cannot say a single word of prayer with the whole heart
without the help of the Holy Ghost. When praying, you are conversing, mouth to mouth,
with the Lord; and if the mouth of your heart is open by faith and love, then it is as though you breathed into yourself, from Him, the spiritual blessings you ask for by the Holy Ghost.
St. John of Kronstadt
When you are being tested by trials and temptations, you cannot avoid feeling dejected. But those who till the earth of hardship and tribulation in their hearts are afterwards filled with great joy, tears of consolation and holy thoughts.
St. John of Karpathos to the monks of India
Do not despond in the time of violent temptations, afflictions, or sicknesses, or at
obstacles arising from the disturbance of the enemy; all this is the reproof and chastisement of the righteous Lord, Who trieth the hearts and reins, for your cleansing, arousing, and correction, for burning out the thorns of carnal passions. And therefore do not complain if you sometimes suffer greatly. Do not think of the suffering, but of the blessed consequences of this chastisement, and the health of the soul. What would you not do for the health of your body? Still more must you bear everything for the health and salvation of your soul, which has eternal life.
St. John of Kronstadt
Wherefore, the man who lives in love reaps life from God, and while yet in this world, he even now breathes the air of the resurrection; in this air the righteous will delight in the resurrection. Love is the Kingdom, whereof the Lord mystically promised His disciples to eat in His Kingdom. For when we hear Him say ‘ye shall eat and drink at the table of my Kingdom,’ what do we suppose we shall eat, if not love? Love is sufficient to nourish a man instead of food and drink.
St. Isaac the Syrian
If repentance is too much for you, and you sin out of habit even when you do not want to, show humility like the publican; this is enough to ensure your salvation.
St. Peter of Damascus
Read this first.
If we want something, we get it. If we need something, we get it, we work for it. I think we can all intellectualize and admit this.
And so truly, nothing is in our way of holiness and salvation.
Abba Daniel also said, ‘The body prospers in the measure in which the soul is weakened, and the soul prospers
in the measure in which the body is weakened.’
-Collected Sayings of the Desert Fathers