When You Fall, Get Up Again
It is often the case that we fail to keep God's commandments and find ourselves despondent, unable, as it seems, to make progress in the battle over our sins. When the same sins constantly plague us, despondency is our enemy. Despondency is the tool demons use to distract us from the goal, making us feel we will never attain holiness. The demons want us to give up the battle, and despondency is their chief ally.
Holiness requires struggle, and the despondent man is unable to see the possibility of victory, so he surrenders to despair. The first step towards victory is simple. We just get up again. If you fall a second time, get up a second time. However many times we have to get up again, we do so with keeping our gaze on Christ, through Whom we are given the grace to conquer those repetitive sins that plague us.
By keeping our eyes on Jesus Christ, we are empowered to move towards holiness of life, for the good that rises up in our heart, comes from Christ. As we struggle for transformation of heart, even if we fall a dozen times, progress is made, and each step we take brings us closer to the Kingdom of God.
With love in Christ,
Photos: The completed iconostasis of All-Mericful Saviour Monastery's, Protection of the Holy Virgin Katholicon (main temple). Our iconographer is Matushka Ann Margitich of Saint Seraphim Orthodox Church in Santa Rosa, CA. She and her husband, Father Lawrence, have been my friends for over 28 years.
Sunday March 23, 2014 / March 10, 2014
Third Sunday of the Great Lent: Adoration of Cross. Tone six.
Great Lent. Food with Oil
Martyrs Codratus (Quadratus) and with him: Cyprian, Dionysius, Anectus, Paul, Crescens, Dionysius (another), Victorinus, Victor, Nicephorus, Claudius, Diodorus, Serapion, Papias, Leonidas, Chariessa, Nunechia, Basilissa, Nice, Galla, Galina, Theodora, and others at Corinth (258).
New Hieromartyr Demetrius, priest (1938).
Martyrs Codratus, Saturninus, and Rufinus of Nicomedia (3rd c.).
Venerable Anastasia the Patrician of Alexandria (567).
New Martyr Michael of Agrapha, Thessalonica (1544). (Greek).
Martyr Marcian (Greek).
Venerable George Arselaites (6th c.).
St. Attalus, abbot of Bobbio (626).
St. Paul of Taganrog (1879).
St. Kessog, bishop of Loch Lomond.
St. John of Khakuhli, also called Chrysostom (10th-11th c.) (Georgia).
You can read the life of the saint by clicking on the highlighted name.
The Scripture Readings for the Day
Our Compassionate High Priest14 Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. 15 For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. 16 Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
Qualifications for High Priesthood5 For every high priest taken from among men is appointed for men in things pertaining to God, that he may offer both gifts and sacrifices for sins. 2 He can have compassion on those who are ignorant and going astray, since he himself is also subject to weakness. 3 Because of this he is required as for the people, so also for himself, to offer sacrifices for sins. 4 And no man takes this honor to himself, but he who is called by God, just as Aaron was.
A Priest Forever5 So also Christ did not glorify Himself to become High Priest, but it was He who said to Him:
“You are My Son,6 As He also says in another place:
Today I have begotten You.”
Today I have begotten You.”
“You are a priest forever
According to the order of Melchizedek”;
Take Up the Cross and Follow Him34 When He had called the people to Himself, with His disciples also, He said to them, “Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. 35 For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it. 36 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? 37 Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? 38 For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.”
9 And He said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that there are some standing here who will not taste death till they see the kingdom of God present with power.”
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All-Merciful Saviour Monastery
PO Box 2420
Vashon Island, WA 98070-2420 USA
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