November 13 - Daily Thoughts from St. Theophan, One of Russia's Favorite 19th Century Writers

“For nothing is secret, that shall not be made manifest; neither any thing hid, that shall not be known and come abroad.” [Lk. 8:23]. Therefore, no matter how hard we try to hide our wicked deeds, they are being recorded independently from us, and this record will be made known at a certain moment. 

Originally appeared at: Global Orthodox

Editor's Note: Saint Theophan the Recluse (1815-1894) was one of the most prolific and beloved spiritual writers of 19th-century Russia. His works comprise over twenty volumes. Although he lived the last twenty-eight years of his life as a hermit, his impact on his homeland was immense. His articles appeared in the popular spiritual journals of his time, his books were in great demand, and he personally replied to an average of thirty letters daily. We will be publishing excerpts from Thoughts for Each Day of the Year (Amazon). In it, St. Theophan takes us through the yearly cycle of Gospel and Epistle readings, humbly and reverently offering us brief but powerful daily meditations on the word of God. He also addresses the problems of his day: lack of faith, coldness of heart, trust in the rational mind rather than in the revealed Truth of God - which are problems of our day as well.


Saturday, 21st week after Pentecost
Epistle reading: 2 Corinthians 3:12-18
Gospel reading: Luke 8:16-21

Our Record at the Trial

“For nothing is secret, that shall not be made manifest; neither any thing hid, that shall not be known and come abroad.”[Lk. 8:23]. Therefore, no matter how hard we try to hide our wicked deeds, they are being recorded independently from us, and this record will be made known at a certain moment. 

So, what is this record? where is it kept? It is our conscience. Sometimes we force it into silence, and it remains quiet, still doing its job, keeping the most precise history of what we have done.

How can we help, then, if there is too much wrong recorded there? We ought to blot it out. By what means? By tears of repentance. They can wash away any item from the record without a trace. Unless we do that, we will have to read our record ourselves at the trial. And because at that time justice will be in full control of our mind, we will convict ourselves, and the Lord will only confirm our sentence, leaving no possibility for appeal: everyone will convict himself, with no concern for anyone else.

All this will happen instantly: in a snapshot we will see what we really are, and immediately hear the sentence confirmed by the Almighty Lord. That will be the end.

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