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Needful (One Needful Thing)

“Remember, if we are going to have the one thing needful to offer contemporary America, it must be the witness of lives being changed, healed and sanctified by Jesus Christ. This requires continual and deep repentance. The very first words that were ever preached by our Lord were “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!” (Matthew 4:17). The goal of the Christian life is the acquisition of the Holy Spirit.” (Rev. Fr. Theodore Dorrance)

“As Christians, we believe we will be accountable for our lives…we don’t cease to exist when we die. Death has been defeated. When we participate in death, we participate in things that are not part of Life with a capital L, Christ Himself who is Life. Christ said there will be two resurrection, one to Life and one to condemnation. The latter will be the result of our choices and hard heartedness, lack of repentance, not seeking the one thing needful above all else - Him. Our time now is a time to repent. A life lived in repentance, not a perfectly lived life is what is salvific. That is why Christ said repentant tax collectors and harlots got into the kingdom before the Pharisees.” (Sacramental Living Ministries)

“For most of us, whether we are conscious of it or not, life consists essentially in “waiting.” The hyper-activism that characterizes American life, and the life of most Western societies today, distracts us enough from what is essential, that we have lost touch with the real meaning and value of being alive. We are “waiting for Godot” rather than for “the one thing needful.” To acquire that “one thing,” however, we need to shift our focus, reacquire a sense of genuine value (and civility), reorganize our priorities, and reject the artificial virtues society inculcates in us: aggressive competition, perfectionism, status, and material gain. We need to discover once again the truth that the wealthiest among us is the monk who has renounced every possession and obtained the “glorious liberty of the children of God.” We need to find peace and happiness not in the marketplace or in accumulating “stuff,” but in assuming the inner struggle of attentiveness, of watchfulness, which alone leads to “every blessing of the age to come.” (Fr. John Breck)

“…we will also need to learn to make some time for being by oneself with God alone. We will need to learn how to turn off our electronic devices and to light a candle; we will need to turn away from the whirling frenzy of images and information that we let enter our minds and turn our hearts towards the one thing needful. We will need to return to ourselves and to look at the only screen where we can truly find God, the screen of our heart, which is the gateway to the very Kingdom of heaven.” (Bishop Alexis)

“Looking in the wrong place makes the search for happiness a rather unattainable—and even unsatisfying—pursuit. Because happiness is such an ephemeral experience with a “here today, gone tomorrow” quality about it, after many years one can become discouraged or cynical due to its impermanence. All the promises implied by the “pursuit of happiness” may never be quite delivered. And that can cause a reaction filled with disappointment or discontent. By resisting the blessedness that comes from a Source beyond the temporal and passing quality of daily life, we could be missing the “one thing needful” that brings blessedness to our lives. To be blessed is to seek a “quality of life” marked by greater depth and permanence. It cannot be taken away by an unforeseen accident or even tragedy. This is because blessedness is God-sourced.” (Fr. Stephen Kostoff)


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