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"The level of commitment that is required of monastics is no different from those who are married. Our marital status is not the issue. Rather, for us, the concern is the disposition of our hearts and the willingness we have to follow the Lord." (Archimandrite Sergius)

“Just as friction causes warmth, so do good works warm the heart. Without them a good spirit also grows cold and evaporates. This is what usually befalls those who do not do anything, or those who limit themselves to merely not doing evil and unrighteousness. No, we must also find good works to do…All of man’s spiritual activity centers in the heart. The truths are impressed in it, and good dispositions are rooted into it. But its main work is developing a taste for the spiritual, as we have shown. When the mind sees the whole spiritual world and its different components, various good beginnings ripen in the will. The heart, under their influence, should taste sweetness in all of this and radiate warmth.” (St. Theophon the Recluse)

“Man is saved or lost by his thoughts. If he cultivates good dispositions, he arrays his heart to become the dwelling place of the Holy Spirit. If however he accepts evil thoughts from the enemy, he drowns in the abyss of darkness and the word of scripture pertains to him that ‘Salvation is far from the wicked’. The heart of man can become hell, if it ends up a hovel of the thoughts of the enemy. However, it can become heaven if it burns like a furnace with the love of God. In this furnace, the ‘hidden man of the heart’, who is very precious before his Creator, finds his delight.” (Archimandrite Zacharias Zacharou)

“When we have relaxed spirits and hearts in prayer, in worship and in receiving the sacraments, the grace of the Holy Spirit will pour over us like warm water and give warmth and light to our troubled souls. If we come to receive grace with hearts that are hardened, it may actually make us feel worse. That is why in I Corinthians 11: 27-30, we read “Whoever, therefore, eats the Bread of drinks the Cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the Body and Blood of the Lord. Let a man examine himself, and so eat of the Bread and drink of the Cup. For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the Body eats and drinks judgment upon himself. That is why many of you are weak and ill, and some have died.” This message may seem a little harsh, but it is true. To partake of Christ is a serious thing, it needs to be treated with great reverence. To partake of God’s grace through prayer and the sacraments (Communion, Confession, Unction) can be very reaffirming, or very dangerous, depending on the disposition with which we approach grace.” (Fr. Stavros Akrotirianakis)

“When you pray, see to it that you have a peaceful disposition. It is the most important precondition for fruitful prayer….Each of us will have to discover our own most effective means to acquire a measure of quiet and a disposition toward prayer….In the quiet of that place, bring your mind and heart to focus on God’s presence. Then allow the Holy Spirit to direct your prayer in whatever way is most appropriate, most necessary.” (Elder Efstratios of Glinsk, Fr. John Breck)


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