(1Th 5:15-17) See that none render evil for evil to any man: but ever follow that which is good towards each other and towards all men. Always rejoice. Pray without ceasing.
BLOG: Top Ten Secrets of Happiness: Catholic Version
THE SHIELD OF FAITH: "Walk cheerfully!" Practical advice from St. Padre Pio
Almost everyone knows that "pray, hope, and don't worry" is attributed to St. Pio, but some of his other spiritual gems are not so well known:
Duty before everything else, even something holy.
Whenever necessary, you must look without seeing, and see without thinking about it.
If Jesus reveals Himself, thank Him; if He hides Himself thank Him also. All is a pleasantry of His love.
Always do a little work. Work, therefore, and though you keep on advancing slowly, you will nevertheless go a long way.
When there is not time for both, meditation is to be preferred to vocal prayer, because it is more fruitful.
Despise your temptations and do not dwell on them.
Ahead! Courage! In the spiritual life he who does not advance goes backward.
Don't draw back, and worse still, don't stop going up the Calvary of life. Jesus will extend His hand to steady you.
Walk in the way of the Lord with simplicity and do not torment your spirit.
Only one thing is necessary: to lift up your spirit and love God.
The time best spent is that which is spent for the glory of God and the salvation of souls. MORE
EXCERPT ORTHODOX CHRISTIAN NETWORK: A Cure for Depression from St. Silouan the Athonite
In an interview I recently read, the Archimandrite Sophrony Sacharov, of blessed memory, at that time a younger monk, was asked by a visiting priest: “Fr. Sophrony, how will we be saved?” Fr. Sophrony prepared him a cup of tea, gave it to him, and told him, “Stand on the edge of the abyss of despair and when you feel that it is beyond your strength, break off and have a cup of tea.” Obviously this was a very odd answer, and the young priest was definitely confused. So off he went to St. Silouan the Athonite, who lived not far from there, and told him everything, asking for advice. Long story short, next day, St. Silouan came to the cell of Fr. Sophrony and the two started a conversation about salvation. The beautiful fruit of their conversation was an unforgettable phrase that I would like to also offer as the answer to our conversation today about depression: “Keep your mind in hell and despair not.”
At first glance, St. Silouan’s take on salvation is not less strange that Fr. Sophrony’s initial answer, but it actually makes great sense. In traditional Christianity, the difficulties of life, the hardships are assumed as part of our fallen existence. Our bodies and our minds suffer the torments, but this is nothing but a temporary stage. The ascetic Fathers considered them as tests on par with the athletic exercises, very useful in practicing and improving the powers of the soul like patience, kindness, hope, faith and so forth. We keep our mind in hell when we consciously assume the pain of living in a fallen world, when we learn from this passing agony to avoid the even greater torture of an eternity without Christ. But there is hope in this suffering because Christ himself has suffered them first and has opened for us a way out of despair, a way out of pain, a way out of death. Christ is the well of life, the bread of eternity, and the only Man we need.
So as Christians we keep our minds in hell and we despair not, but courageously give glory to God in all things, even in pain, hoping, always hoping, in our Savior, the only One who can take us out of the brink of despair and set us for a new life in Him. In Him we put our hope, in Him we find our purpose, and on Him we set our goal.
Through the intercessions of our Father among the Saints Silouan the Athonite, through the prayers of Fr. Sophrony of Essex, of all the ascetic Fathers and all the saints, O Lord of compassion and hope, have mercy on us and save us!
The Desert Fathers: sayings of the Early Christian Monks: Discretion
55. A brother came to Poemen and said to him, 'Many thoughts come into my mind and put me in danger.' He sent him out into the open air, and said, 'Open your lungs and do not breathe.' He replied, 'I can't do that.' Then he said to him: 'Just as you can't stop air coming into your lungs, so you can't stop thoughts coming into your mind. Your part is to resist them.'
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