Our negligence, carelessness, and laziness concerning our
salvation is amazing; for how many means, faculties, and conveniences
are granted to us for it by the all-compassionate and greatly merciful
Lord! First: our natural thirst for salvation, peace, and blessedness in
the soul; the light of the understanding and the yearning of our will
for all that is true, good, beautiful, pure, exalted; the abundance of
grace given to us for salvation, which flows like rivers within the
Church and fills the souls thirsting for salvation; the nearness and
readiness of the Lord to save us at every time and every moment - "the Spirit Himself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered"
(Rom. 8:26); the assistance and co-operation of our guardian angels for
our salvation; the daily Divine Service in the Church; and the saving
Mysteries, prayers, and intercession of the Mother of God and all the
It is amazing how in the face of all this we can still perish,
and not all be saved. Certainly there are many things that impede our
salvation: temptations from our too-passionate flesh, from the
adulterous and sinful world, from the devil who has everywhere laid
snares for our destruction; the corruption of our nature, our sinful
conception and birth in sin; and the inclinations and habits of sin.
However, far greater are the means for salvation than the means to
perdition. "For greater is He that is in you (Christ), than he that is in the world (the devil)"
(I John 4:4), and all the Saints overcame all obstacles and were saved.
But what do we do? We drowse and sleep! Shameful, sinful, painful,
woeful! Sin gains power over us in that it has buried itself deeply in
us and has taken its seat in us, in our hearts, in our passionate flesh,
and has made itself a fortress out of our own passions, out of our
self-love, concupiscence, love of honor, pride, love of possessions,
incontinence, self-conceit, little faith, unbelief, free-thinking,
hypocrisy, partiality, and laziness; and by these passions, as with
mighty weapons, it shoots us down and takes us into captivity, cutting
us off, alienating us from Christ, our true Life.
Wherefore he who
desires salvation must dig, delve into his heart, and lay his foundation
upon the rock, that is, upon Christ the Saviour, upon strong,
unshakable faith in Him, upon hope on Him, and upon no one and nothing
else-upon strong love for Him and his neighbor.