Glory to Jesus Christ! Glory to Him forever!
The Morning Offering
Saturday, January 24 / January 11 (Church Calendar)
Saints of the Day:
Scripture Readings for the Day:a
Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men. See that none render evil for evil unto any man; but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men. Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. Quench not the Spirit. Despise not prophesyings. Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. Abstain from all appearance of evil. And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.Luke 17:3-10
Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him. And if he trespass against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him. And the apostles said unto the Lord, Increase our faith. And the Lord said, If ye had faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye might say unto this sycamine tree, Be thou plucked up by the root, and be thou planted in the sea; and it should obey you. But which of you, having a servant plowing or feeding cattle, will say unto him by and by, when he is come from the field, Go and sit down to meat? And will not rather say unto him, Make ready wherewith I may sup, and gird thyself, and serve me, till I have eaten and drunken; and afterward thou shalt eat and drink? Doth he thank that servant because he did the things that were commanded him? I trow not. So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants: we have done that which was our duty to do.
For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body. For we which live are alway delivered unto death for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh. So then death worketh in us, but life in you. We having the same spirit of faith, according as it is written, I believed, and therefore have I spoken; we also believe, and therefore speak; Knowing that he which raised up the Lord Jesus shall raise up us also by Jesus, and shall present us with you. For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God.
We have been supporting ourselves with a gourmet coffee company, Monastery Blend Coffee, which can be purchased on line, at: http://www.vashonmonks.com. But, our primary work is that of prayer, and we follow the traditional service cycle of most Orthodox monasteries of our size. We are a small monastery, with three tonsured monks, and two novices.
I've been emailing The Morning Offering, as a way of encouraging others to begin their work days with a focus on the spiritual. By offering the Church assigned Daily Scripture Readings, as well as a quote from the Fathers, and an occasional thought of my own, I've hoped to support people in the work place. Most everyone has access to their email each day, so I've made it easy to take a quick moment to read from the Holy Scriptures, and begin one's day in a spiritual direction.
The other photos show the monastery as it was this past month, when we were hit with the worst winter storm in four decades. Aside from being sick of winter, I consider myself a lucky man, for I am a monk, afforded my solitude and silence, on an island, in the center of a forest. Sometimes I look out my window, and wonder if it is really just a dream. If it be but a dream, it is one I wish to share with you.