Saturday, November 10, 2012

St Mark the Ascetic

Initially grace arouses the conscience in a divine manner. That is how even sinners have come to repent and so to conform to God's will. 

Again, grace may be hidden in advice given by a neighbor. Sometimes it also accompanies our understanding during reading, and as a natural result teaches our intellect the truth about itself. If, then, we do not hide the talent given to us in this way, we shall enter actively into the joy of the Lord. 

Once you recognize that the Lord's judgments 'are in all the earth' (1 Chr. 16:14), then everything that happens to you will teach you knowledge of God. 

Everyone receives what he deserves in accordance with his inner state. But only God understands the many different ways in which this happens.

Do not refuse to learn, even though you may be very intelligent. For what God provides has more value than our own intelligence. 

Many of us feel remorse for our sins, yet we gladly accept their causes. 

Humility consists, not in condemning our conscience, but in recognizing God's grace and compassion.

 To him who hungers after Christ grace is food; to him who is thirsty, a reviving drink; to him who is cold, a garment; to him who is weary, rest; to him who prays, assurance; to him who mourns, consolation. 

Some, when they actively observe the commandments, expect this to outweigh their sins; others, who observe the commandments without this presumption, gain the grace of Him who died on account of our sins. We should consider which of these is right. 
St Mark the Ascetic

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