Air is like God. It is always near, and you can’t see it. You learn how necessary it is when you lack it.
Sun is like God. It can both warm you up or burn you. You cannot look at it directly without pain in your eyes. All living creatures are drawn to it. All living creatures are fed by its power.
Sea is like God. When it is transparent and tender, it is like a Big One being tender towards a Small One. When it roars and seethes, you can’t argue with it
A man is like God when he provides for his family and is ready to fight for it. And when he spares his words and seldom smiles.
A woman is like God, too, when she breastfeeds and when she gets up to her crying baby at night. When she dissolves in her children and breaks the habit of thinking about herself.
There’s so much in this world that is like God. Where do atheists come from?
Archpriest Andrei Tkachev
St. Nikolaj (Velimirović) said:
A gardener cuts off branches so that the tree would grow faster and bear more fruit. If he cuts off too many branches, the tree will dry up. Be assured that God watches every man more carefully and mercifully than any gardener. Here is what St. Nil Sorsky says, “If a potter knows how long to keep the vessel in fire lest it breaks, doesn’t God know the extent to which we need to suffer?” You have to believe that the Lord is much more intelligent and loving than we are.
This is what the Rev. Gabriel (Igoshkin) said about people improving their lives:
“If we put sharp items, e.g., knives, forks, awls, needles, nails, broken glass, pieces of iron and pottery shards into a bag, they will tear, pierce, and cut the bag. We have to get rid of all sharp items in our bag in order to rescue it.
Likewise, passions, vices, sins, wrongdoings, anger, enmity, and hatred fill up our hearts and tear them apart. They make people suffer and feel the pangs of conscience. Our life calls us to repent and throw the wrongdoings that cause this pain out of our hearts, to throw the sinful filth away, like sharp items that cut and pierce us. If we repent, we shall find peace in our hearts.”
Translated by The Catalogue of Good Deeds