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Their Back Towards the Lord

Wednes­day. Also now, saith the Lord, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fast­ing, and with weep­ing, and with mourn­ing: And rend your heart, and not your gar­ments, and turn unto the Lord your God: for He is gra­cious and mer­ci­ful, slow to anger, and of great kind­ness. Blow the trum­pet, sanc­ti­fy a fast, call a solemn assem­bly… let the bride­groom go forth of his cham-ber, and the bride out of her clos­et… let the priests, the min­is­ters of the Lord, weep and say: “Spare thy peo-ple, O Lord!” (Joel 2:2–17). Who now hear­kens unto this voice, resound-ing in the Church? If on the city squares a thun­der­ous voice should resound from heav­en, say­ing, “Spare your­selves, O peo­ple, so that the Lord will spare you!” — per­haps some­one would hear it and awake from his ecsta­sy of plea­sures, lusts and wine. The priests do not cease to plead, “Spare O Lord!” But from the Lord comes the just yet ter­ri­ble answer, “I will not spare, for there are none seek­ing to be spared.” Ev-eryone is stand­ing with their back to the Lord; they have turned from Him and for­got­ten Him.

Saint Theo­phan the Recluse