"And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God.
For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified. And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling. And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power..."
Friday, August 08, 2014
My Thanks And Appeal To My Attackers -Through The Words Of Saint Symeon
SAINT SYMEON'S ATTACKER, ANOTHER ORTHODOX CHRISTIAN, DID HIM MUCH HARM OVER A PERIOD OF 7 YEARS, TELLING LIES, RUMOR-MONGERING, CAUSING EVEN HIS MOST ARDENT SUPPORTERS TO TURN ON HIM-- THIS, HE WROTE AFTER BEING PHYSICALLY BANISHED FROM HIS MONASTERY-- A LETTER OF THANKS AND APPEAL FOR MORE OF THE SAME...
"...from your Symeon, who is in exile and being persecuted because of you... behold what grain the fields of your efforts and your words on God's behalf have yielded! See what glory and joy they have granted me, what crowns they have caused me to win, with what happiness they have filled me! For they have led me up to the summit of knowledge and have planted the feet of my intellect on the rock, and have caused me to be clothed in this rock [Christ] itself, from which I have the living water gushing forth in me, moving and speaking and encouraging me to write to you. This fills me with every delight and renders me completely unaware of the deadly trials around me. Like the three boys whom it kept from being burned in the furnace, it has thus also hidden me in its shelter and preserves me from grief and misery. For this I thank youand will never cease from thanking you and praying for you. So if you can do anything else to increase the happiness and glory of those who love you, please do not hesitate to do it, so that your reward may be multiplied and your recompense from God, who has set out the laws concerning these things, may be more abundant. Farewell."
EVEN WITH SAINT SYMEON IN EXILE, THE ATTACKER CONTINUED WITH MORE OF THE SAME...
ANOTHER LETTER FROM SYMEON...
"My good master...[you have] once again added more noble crowns of victory that I already have. How can I repay you for all that you, in your goodness, have done for me, your humble servant, for all that you continue to do, and that I know you will do again? For you have been my benefactor everyday for seven years already. How can I make amends to you when you are so zealous in these matters and know how to endow your friends so munificently with your sweet remedies? But, I beg you, do not halt your plans, do not give up your work! Add to them, if you will, things that, by their intensity, will make my sufferings even sweeter. For you have increased for me the light, the joy, the sweetness, everything that gushes forth in me in such a marvelous way in peace of my thoughts through the ineffable gladness of the Spirit. Please go on increasing these by all means, and, continuing to do what you do, unite me more swiftly with my beloved God, on whose behalf I willing bear everything and because of whom, as you see, I am enveloped by you in the chains of exile. Farewell. ...[Y]our Symeon, who, because of you, is in exile, stripped of all my possessions."