• Michael Haldas

Intent


“For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.” (Hebrews 4:12-13). The word of God and the sword here are living and powerful. The phrase His sight (v. 13) tells us this reference is not to the written word, Holy Scripture, but to the Word of God Himself, our Lord Jesus Christ (see Jn 1:1–18). Nothing is able to escape the discernment of Christ, the Word of God.” (Orthodox Study Bible, Hebrews 4:12-13)

“But God understands our intent and receives what we offer as long as our hearts yearn for Him…God sees every action of every person, including the intents of our hearts…God is “a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart (Prv 5:21; Gn 39:9).” (Dynamis 1/18/2019, 3/11/2020, 12/18/2012)

“Conscience in men is nothing else but the voice of the omnipresent God moving in the heart—the Lord who knows all: thoughts, desires, intentions, deeds; past, present and future.” (St. John of Kronstadt)

“If you say something evil about your brother or sister, even if it is true, your soul suffers an unhealable wound. You can reveal the sins of another only when the sole intention in your heart is the benefit of the soul of the sinner." (St. Nikon of Optina)

“The priorities and intentions—the heart or inner attitudes—of disciples are forever the same. In the heart of a disciple there is a desire, and there is decision or settled intent. The disciple of Christ desires above all else to be like him.” (Dallas Willard)

"You cannot do everything, but you can do something. God wants you to do your best and leave the rest to him. St. Theofan said, “Exert all your strength, but rest your concern for success on God.” The Lord doesn’t expect any more from us than what we have to offer. But He does expect us to be faithful and that we do our very best for Him. We do our best and leave the rest to Him.” (Fr. Jim Kordaris)

“We should not be discouraged. Deeds do not need to be great in order for them to be valued by God. When we do the best we can, we may well be changing the course of history. What we do, no matter how insignificant it may seem, spreads out from us until it reaches the end of the universe. No day, therefore, is a day in which nothing happens. For good or for bad, in what we offer, and by what we withhold, we change the world. And we know we make progress when, in each day, we include something done for the Lord.” (Rev. Andrew Demotses)

“In the Gospel of Mark version of the story where the woman anoints Christ’s head with the expensive oil and many around Him became piously indignant, criticizing her and saying the oil should have been sold and the money given to the poor, Jesus says, ‘She had done what she could’ or ‘what she could, she did.’ The woman was doing the best she knew how to do at that moment. St. John Chrysostom said that the people were not wrong in principle about giving to the poor. However, they missed the point that Christ lovingly accepted what she had to offer at that moment. St. John Chrysostom also says beforehand had the woman asked, Christ would have told her to sell it and give the money to the poor. But the point here for us is a reminder that when we offer or act with the right heart, even if it is flawed, God knows we are doing the best we can and accepts our offer or action in that moment. This gentleness of grace and mercy that we receive from Him is also what we need to extend to others.” (Sacramental Living Ministries)

“God values deeds according to their intentions. For it is said, "The Lord grant unto you according to your heart" (Psalms. 19:5) ... Therefore, whoever wants to do something but can't is considered as having done it by God, who sees the intentions of our hearts. This applies to both good and evil deeds alike.” (St. Mark the Ascetic)

“Christ our God sees within us, taking into account our motives, intentions, desires, and actions – the whole picture. The factors laid bare before His gaze include our process of decision-making, the motivations that prompt us, and the hidden wrestling with our urges, both noble and corrupt. Other people may guess at what is taking place within us, but the Lord knows; He misses nothing, inwardly or outwardly.” (Dynamis 12/20/2014)

"It is dangerous to pretend to obey God when our hearts are far from Him because God knows our true intentions.” (Life Application Study Bible, Matthew 21:30)

“If the intention is unclean, the deed that follows from it will also be evil, even if it seems good…In all of our deeds God looks at the intention, whether we do it for His sake, or for the sake of some other intention. “ (St. Gregory the Dialogist, St. Maximus the Confessor)

“In weak moments you may revert to your old dragonish [sinful] nature, but as long as you hate those moments and truly maintain your intention to live by the Spirit, God stays with you and counts your intentions as the real thing.” (Thomas Williams)

“God understands our intent and receives what we offer as long as our hearts yearn for Him.” (OCPM 1/18/2016)

“The more we commune with God’s grace through the workings of the Holy Spirit within us, the more likely we are to receive the revelation of our true value. It is the purpose of the Holy Spirit ultimately to lead us into full union with God. None of this is magic, nor does it come from some secret “gnostic” knowledge; but it does take personal effort on our part and our personal intent to be present with God at every moment in our lives.” (Father David L. Fontes, PsyD)

#FatherDavidLFontes #ThomasWilliams #StGregorytheDialogist #StMaximustheConfessor #FrJimKordaris #RevAndrewDemotses #SacramentalLivingMinistries #StMarktheAscetic #Dynamis #OrthodoxStudyBible #StJohnofKrondstadt #StNikonofOptina #DallasWillard