We picked up this evening with our reading of the very challenging Hypothesis 22: the Fathers’ teaching to avoid the world and worldly relations. However, we must understand that when they speak of the world they speak of those things or relationships that are driven more by the passions than by grace and the love of God.
Central to this is having a rightly ordered love that is focused upon Christ. All things must begin and end with Him and all things are judged in light of the Love of the Kingdom. This Love must become the lens through which we view all things, most especially our own thoughts and desires. What is it - at this moment - that is going to be pleasing to God or fulfill our obedience to our elder? Are we doing things in subtle ways simply to please ourselves; always seeking to form and fashion our own identity and to be the source of meaning for ourselves and our lives?
For a Christian living in the world to “stay in one’s cell“ means to keep watch over my inner self, my own heart. This is why the Fathers put forward as an essential practice unceasing prayer, and particular the Jesus Prayer. It is only by constantly calling out to God that we are given the strength and the grace to love God and to love others in the way He desires for us. We are called to be Christ for one another and so our love and our actions must be Christlike. To be anything otherwise is to strip the gospel of its power to make ourselves unrecognizable as those who have been made sons and daughters of God.
Text of chat during the group:
00:17:12 carolnypaver: Congratulations!🥳
00:18:31 Debra: What are we congratulating? I came in late
00:18:50 carolnypaver: 500 podcasts for Fr. David!
00:19:09 Ambrose Little, OP: remarkable progress. how did we get to p188?? 🙂
00:20:07 Debra: Oh, wow! Thanks Carolyn!
00:32:55 Anthony: Does this mean that even as being a contemplative is a vocation, staying in a city to minister must be a specific vocatiom?
00:59:00 Rachel: I love that song!
01:01:29 Annie Karto: So true about doing more than what God asks, especially in ministry
01:05:15 Erick Chastain: Stop being friends as much as possible with worldly people. It will help everything tremendously. Having done this it helps remove many occasions of sin.
01:10:42 Carol Nypaver: It’s difficult to remember, as parents, that the goal of parenting is not that our children love us but to raise them to be citizens of Heaven, which sometimes causes them to hate us.
01:11:19 Rachel: Thank you Carol!
01:12:04 Erick Chastain: I read it as saying we should flee from the world as much as possible, including worldly people, to protect ourselves from the flaring of the passions
01:13:04 Erick Chastain: but without abandoning our responsibilities if we are not a monk
01:19:59 John White: The author of The Imitation of Christ paraphrased the Roman philosopher/playwright Seneca "As often as I have been among men, I have returned home a lesser man"
01:20:10 Ambrose Little, OP: Challenge to connect with people if we always are trying to be aloof.
01:20:11 iPad (10)maureen: I think the monk you met You spotted Joy, It Joy we give up things
01:23:31 iPad (10)maureen: I say the. Jesus prayer when something I do not like is on TV
01:23:40 Ambrose Little, OP: You could try time boxing. Like “I'll watch an hour with you" or something and/or “just this show on this day" or similar.
01:24:39 Erick Chastain: that's a great suggestion Ambrose!
01:30:13 Annie Karto: What beautiful teaching Fr. Thank you
01:31:32 Daniel Swinington: thank you
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