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Monday. [Phil. 2:12–16; Luke 6:24–30] Woe to those who are rich, who are full, who laugh, and who are praised. But good shall come to those who endure every wrongful accusation, beating, robbery, or compulsory difficulty. This is com pletely opposite to what people usu ally think and feel! The thoughts of God are as far from human thoughts as heaven is from the earth. How else could it be?We are in exile; and it is not remarkable for those in exile to be offended and in sulted. We are under a penance; the penance consists of deprivations and labours. We are sick; and most useful for the sick are bitter medi cines. The Saviour Himself all of His life did not have a place to lay His head, and He finished his life on the cross — why should his followers have a better lot? The Spirit of Christ is the spirit of preparedness to suffer and bear good-naturedly all that is sorrowful. Comfort, arro gance, splendour, and ease are all foreign to its searching and tastes. Its path lies in the fruitless, dreary desert. The model is the forty-year wandering of the Israelites in the desert. Who follows this path? Ev eryone who sees Canaan beyond the desert, boiling over with milk and honey. During his wandering he too receives manna, however not from the earth, but from heav en; not bodily, but spiritually. All the glory is within.
Saint Theophan the Recluse.