Elder Joseph of Vatopedi: “The changes in spiritual life”
17 Ιουνίου 2010
Question: In addition to what you have already told us, geronta, what else must we do when these changes appear in our spiritual life?
Answer: As I have already said, one must learn the art of the spiritual war. However, the most crucial of all, as Jesus has emphasized, is to be patient. “The person who endures to the end will be saved” and “it is through your patience that your soul is being built”. It is only through patience that reality will be revealed. This is so because the spiritual mood swings are sometimes leading one to high spirits and sometimes dragging one down. However, neither the ups nor the downs are real. Neither the wave of Grace which sweeps over one and freshens him and consoles him is permanent, nor is despair and spiritual dryness. Reality can only be reached through forbearance, which is also called patience. When one is getting used to being patient, one is waiting for Lord’s mercy which will descent upon him and enlighten him.
The spiritual mood swings have many causes. However, even if they appear from the right (translator’s note: they are the consequence of a good cause) or the left( a bad cause), they only have one purpose: to be of benefit and lead to one’s advancement. The Lord of Life and Death only allows something to happen to a person when He has decided with His Holy Judgment that it will certainly benefit a person. The issue of the Lord’s All Loving attitude and Providence is- like all holy perfections- Godly and perfect. The Lord is not subject to changes so that harm results from one of His decisions. The Lord is only Benevolence, Love, Goodness, Sympathy and only Mercy. Therefore, He trains both those He loves and those He schools according to His attributes. That is, lovingly.
Source: Elder Joseph of Vatopedi (facebook)