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The World Paseth Away

Friday. [I John 2:7–17; Mark 14:3–9] The world passeth away, and the lust thereof (I John 2:17). Who does not see this? Everything around us pass‐es away — things, people, events; and we ourselves are passing away. Worldly lust also passes; we scarce‐ly taste the sweetness of its satisfac‐tion before both the lust and the sweetness disappear. We chase af‐ter something else, and it is the same; we chase after a third thing —again the same. Nothing stands still; everything comes and goes. What? Is there really nothing constant?! There is, says the Apostle: he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever (I John 2:17). How does the world, which is so transient, endure? Be‐cause God so desires that the world endure. The will of God is the world’s unshakeable and indestruc‐tible foundation. It is the same a‐mong people — whosoever begins to stand firmly in the will of God is made steadfast and firm at once. One’s thoughts are restless when chasing after something transient. But as soon as one comes to his senses and returns to the path of the will of God, his thoughts and inten‐tions begin to settle down. When at last one succeeds in acquiring the habit for such a way of life, every‐thing he has, both within and with‐out, comes into quiet harmony and serene order. Having begun here, this deep peace and imperturbable serenity will pass over to the other life as well, and there it will abide unto the ages. Amidst the general transience of things around us, this is what is not transient, and what is constant within us: walking in the will of God.

Saint Theophan the Recluse

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