This Daily Devotion is to help our members and others reflect on the understanding of Christian service to our Lord.
Devotion for Friday, August 16, 2019
The Rt. Rev. Archimandrite, Msgr. George Appleyard
An Invitation to Prayer
This is what the Lord says,
the one who made you, Jacob,
the one who formed you, Israel;
—“Do not be afraid, because I have redeemed you;
I called you by name, and you are mine.” (Isaiah 43:1) Come, let us answer the call of the Lord!
Their food was still in their mouths
when the anger of God flared up against them and he killed the fittest of them
and waylaid the elect of Israel.
In the midst of all this they sinned the more and did not believe his miracles,
and they spent their days in foolishness and their years in anxiety.
When he slew them, they sought him;
they tuned to him and called to him.
They remembered that God was their helper, and that God most high was their redeemer.
But they loved him only with their mouth and lied to him with their tongue.
Their hearts were not right with him
nor were they faithful to the covenant.
Yet he is compassionate—
to expiate their sins, not destroy them— and inclined to turn away his wrath, and not stoke all his anger.
He remembered they are only flesh,
a breath that passes and does not return.
From Saint Basil’s Homily Against Anger.
Let us put a stop to evil from the beginning, removing the anger from our souls by every means possible. In this way we will cut out a really great number of other evils along with this passion, since it is like a root and source. Has someone abused you? Bless him. Has he hit you? Endure it. Did he spit on you and treat you as nothing? Then hold to this thought about yourself, that you were created from earth and you will return to being earth. Anyone who holds fast to this truth about himself ahead of time will find all subsequent humiliation to be less than the whole truth. In this way you will not arm your enemy for revenge and you will show yourself invulnerable to insults and win the crown of perseverance making your opponent’s insanity the beginning of your own character.
A good soldier knows how to wait patiently until the order to attack is given, how to remain as silent as creeping fog, as aware as a bird or beast of prey. Give me, O Holy Spirit, this military virtue so that I may not only train myself and discipline myself, but even more, develop the disposition of a good soldier, suitable to be stationed in this outpost of your kingdom here on earth, and help win the victory in Christ Jesus, our Lord. Amen