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Saturday, October 9, 2021

Reflection on the Third Sunday of Luke (St. Theophan the Recluse)

 
By St. Theophan the Recluse

Third Sunday of Luke

(Luke 7:11-16)

The Lord sees a mother weeping over the death of her son and has compassion on her; another time He was called to a marriage, and rejoiced together with the family. By this He showed that to share ordinary everyday joys and sorrows is not contrary to His spirit. This is what true, reverent Christians do, who live their life in fear of God. However, they distinguish some everyday life routines from others; for much has entered into these routines which cannot be God’s good will. There are customs that come from passions, which arise for their indulgence; others are kept alive by vanity and busyness. He who has the Spirit of Christ, will be able to distinguish the good from the bad: he adheres to the one and rejects the other. He who does this with the fear of God is not alienated by others, though he does not act like them, because he always acts in the spirit of love and compassion toward the infirmities of his brothers. Only a spirit of zeal beyond measure rubs people the wrong way and produces disharmony and division. Such a spirit cannot refrain from teaching and criticizing. But the one with the Spirit of Christ is only concerned with ordering his own and his family’s life in a Christian way; he does not permit himself to interfere in the affairs of others, saying to himself, “Who set me as a judge?” He quietly makes everyone well disposed to himself, and inspires respect for those routines to which he holds. A supervisor makes himself unloved, and evokes disapproval for the good routines to which he holds. Humility in such cases is needed — Christian humility. It is the source of Christian good sense, which knows how to act well in a given situation. 


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