3rd Thursday of Lent (Geronda Ephraim of Arizona, 1980)

NOTE: The following is taken from Fire from the Holy Mountain: The Prayer Diary of Elder Epraim, entry for February 29, 1980, Third Thursday of Lent, pp. 78-79. 

A Greek and English draft were sent out to the monasteries in the early 2000s.
A Greek and English draft were sent out to the monasteries in the early 2000s.

I feel sinful and dirty. The true awareness of my nothingness greatly helps me to see God.

“Thou shalt gladden him in joy with Thy face” (Ps. 20:6). Oh, that divine face! It has eros and beauty from the glory, from the supremely radiant light of the Trinity’s effulgence. There is where the transcendent beauty of God is; there is the divine electrification and contact with God the Father, by His humility and condescension.

Oh, how the unlimited the humility and simplicity of God is! The humility and condescension of the awesome God astounds and overwhelms me! How filthy and dirty man is! Even though he has so many sins and is so guilty, he feels haughty and behaves egotistically. There is nothing stupider than this.

The angels are celebrating in heaven, dressed in white with inconceivable beauty within the supremely bright light of God. They chant—and what they chant! Their hymns are pure bliss. But that which makes them stay in this blessed state is the grace of humility and true self-knowledge. Unfortunately, I am proud, which is why I lack this joy and grace.

Like a helpless creature, like a thirsty deer, I seek, cry out, and long to be watered by the true Fountain—my God—with a divine drink, with the water springing up into eternal life (cf. Jn. 4:14). “When shall I come and appear before the face of my God?” (cf. Ps. 41:2) I weep, seeking my God. When I touch Him, I feel him and weep. But how this happens, I do not know; one thing I do know is that I feel Him as much as He wants and corresponding to the humility I feel for my dirty self.

My God and Father, open the eyes of my blind soul to see my nature, the nothingness of my nothingness, and through it to see You, the most lovely Light, Who gives eternal life to mortal man. Enlighten my darkness, O divine, lovely Light.

Amen.

KLO

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The Second Sunday of Lent (Geronda Ephraim of Arizona, 1980)

NOTE: The following is taken from Fire from the Holy Mountain: The Prayer Diary of Elder Epraim, entry for February 18, 1980, Second Sunday of Lent, p. 77. 

A Greek and English draft were sent out to the monasteries in the early 2000s.
A Greek and English draft were sent out to the monasteries in the early 2000s.

The communication of my sinful soul with the supremely radiant God was very wonderful tonight. The heavenly world is a different realm; a different mode of life; a different atmosphere.

My God, what can I, the miserable pauper, say about what You are! You are a stupendous and immense delight. You are impalpable, and yet how are You touched? For when this contact happens, the soul is electrified with divine electricity, and sweet and beautiful tears run and run from my eyes. But in the heart, what happens!

My incomprehensible, inexpressible, and lovely God, what can I, the miserable one say about You! There are no words, there is no man capable or competent to do so. One can only feel reverence, worship, sacredness, and divine love in silent amazement.

Oh, how much I would like to be no longer on earth with the uncertainty of my salvation! Oh, if only I were already in the world of my God, my Father, my worship. There is eternity, certainty, and security.

I weep because I am the greatest sinner in the whole world. I mourn the uncertainty of my salvation. I do not know if I shall be saved. Here is the crux of the matter. Alas! I wonder, shall I reach the calm haven of eternal bliss? I wonder, shall I see the glory of my God?

Have pity on me, O only-begotten Logos of God,

My Jesus Christ

2nd Sunday of Lent

The entire Diary for 1980 can be read here:

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The Second Saturday of Lent (Geronda Ephraim of Arizona, 1980)

NOTE: The following is taken from Fire from the Holy Mountain: The Prayer Diary of Elder Epraim, entry for February 17, 1980, Second Saturday of Lent, p. 76. 

A Greek and English draft were sent out to the monasteries in the early 2000s.
A Greek and English draft were sent out to the monasteries in the early 2000s.

February 17, 1980

I experienced amazement and divine wonder tonight in my poor prayer. My nous tasted God. “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him” (1 Cor. 2:9)

All this is a fruit of the labor of my Holy Elder, who truly toiled inside the caves of Athos with fasts, vigils, weeping, and tears. I, on the other hand, am a miserable, hideous monstrosity; an unmonastic monk; a sluggard eating the labor of my father, Saint Joseph. If God did not have mercy on me through his intercessions, I would be spiritually lost.

The festival in heaven entices me—there in the eternal and immutable blessings, where only silence reigns, since it is the only thing one is able to do. But when shall I behold the face of my lovely Father!!! When shall I be satisfied with His glory? Oh, what beauty! But I am a filthy stench and the demons’ joy.

My God, forgive me, the nothing of nothingness. Only Your mercy saves me from my evil self…

2nd Saturday of Lent

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