If you haven’t had an encounter with God, you might have wasted your day.
We’ve got to be looking for Him and finding Him throughout the day in prayer, in our actions, and in conversations with other people. It is that encounter that shapes the utmost reality called life.
It is only our encounter with God that reveals and unveils the profound meanings of everything that we come in contact with. First of all, this encounters opens the depth within our souls. It is God’s calling that our hearts respond to. Our hearts are like oceans that hide unknown depths. Only if we dive deep into our own souls, we can discover God.
“Find the door of your own heart, and you shall see that it is the door that leads to the Kingdom of Heaven” (Saint John Chrysostom).
The Lord descends to the bottom of our souls, penetrates their darkest and deepest layers, and enlightens them with the light of his eternal love — and darkness disappears.
You haven’t wasted your day if you live and let other people live. If you acknowledge the right of the Other to exist. If you don’t distort the Other person’s words, if you don’t libel nor betray the Other, if you aren’t jealous of them. If you are courageous enough to shift the focus of the Universe from yourself to the Other.
You will have to die, to deny yourself, to overgrow your selfishness if you want to achieve it. This growth is painful but it’s the only way that you can give place to the Other with all his or her demands and his or her world.
Only if we break free from ourselves and our passions, will we be able to perceive the light that radiates from other people and the presence of God in them.
We should learn to hear the Other and to yield to his words, to accept the silence and the beauty of his soul and see the whole world in that person. We’ve got to learn from others, to appreciate and thank them, to enjoy mutual creative work and joint efforts. We should allow the Other to be better than we are and not to depreciate his efforts and actions.
Metropolitan Anthony of Sourozh wrote the following: “Our every encounter with humans and with God does not only call for special conditions. When we seek God, we have to love humans; when we interact with humans, we have to love God.”
Without daily witness, our faith is futile.
God is Love, and His sacrifice on the Cross is the triumph of love. Therefore, the power of His Church and the sacrifice of her ministry also consists of love.
Nothing can explain the martyrs’ attitude to their ordeals and the apostles’ attitude to their lives, filled with dissemination of the faith in Christ, like genuine love.
What else, except love, can explain the suffering that the apostles had to endure while preaching the Gospel?
This is vividly pointed out by Apostle Paul who writes to the Christians of Corinth, “Even unto this present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no certain dwellingplace; and labour, working with our own hands: being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we suffer it: being defamed, we intreat: we are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day.” (1 Cor. 4:11–13).
If the apostles hadn’t known what they endured that suffering for, would’ve they put their lives at stake?
The virtue of the holy apostles lies not only in their preaching but first of all in their witness.
One can transfer another person’s idea only if he is inspired and captivated by the idea.
The apostles renounced everything in the world for Jesus’s sake. He became the most valuable and the inalienable treasure for them. He filled their whole lives with Himself.
We must remember that if we deny God, we will deny the eternal life, too. Our steadfast adherence to the faith and the Church of Christ is the pledge of our salvation. Salvation is possible only if we profess Christ and bear our witness.
Our witness consists not only of mere words but of our actions, too.
Our witness occurs on every day that God gives us.
Translated by The Catalog of Good Deeds