Friday, November 9, 2012

St. Nektarios: On Temptations


By St. Nektarios of Aegina

Temptations are granted to reveal our hidden passions, to be combated against, and thus heal our soul. They are also a sample of divine mercy. For this reason trust in God and ask for His help, in order to strengthen you in your fight. Hope in God never leads to despair. Temptations bring humility. God knows the resistance of each of us, and grants temptations according to the measure of our strength. However, we must make sure to be vigilant and careful, that we do not put ourselves into temptation.

Trust in God the Good, the Mighty, the Living, and He will lead you into rest. After the trial follows spiritual joy. The Lord monitors those who endure trials and tribulations for His love. Therefore do not become despondent and do not flinch.

I do not want you to be overwhelmed and grieve for what happens contrary to your will: no matter how justified it is. Such grief is symptomatic of egoism. Beware of egoism which hides beneath the form of justification. Beware of untimely sadness which is created after a just evaluation. Excessive grief for all of these things are the temptation. True grief is one: that which is created when we come to know well the miserable plight of our soul. All other griefs have nothing to do with the grace of God.

Be sure to guard in your heart the joy of the Holy Spirit, and do not allow the evil one to pour out his bitterness. Beware! Beware, lest the Paradise that exists in you turns into Hell.

Source: Translated by John Sanidopoulos

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