Sunday, March 06, 2005

No Place for Calculation

From today's post on the Yahoo! group orthodoxdynamis:

Blessed Theophylact bids us look at the disposition of such saints [in Matt. 25]: “...they deny, with befitting modesty, that they have cared for Him.” Why? Very simply - they do not calculate. They are preoccupied with gratitude, delight, and joy in the Lord. Yesterday, we considered the Lord’s “great glory” when He comes again upon the Cloud of Divine Majesty. An inescapable element of that glory will be the final judgment of all mankind. What will the Lord look for in each of us? He will look for gratitude, delight, and love. He will not review our giving to charity, nor our work in prison ministry, nor our struggle to relieve world hunger. It is dangerous to take assurance from any efforts we have invested in such activities. St. Paul warns us about this sort of thinking: “And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing” (1 Cor. 13:3).

In today’s passage the Lord Jesus sets forward His basis for judgment: are His light and His love planted and flowering in our hearts? Do we calculate, or do we love? St. John of Kronstadt teaches that “The purer the heart becomes, the larger it becomes; consequently it is able to find room for more and more loved ones.” How easy it is to forget the poor, the neglected, the homeless, the destitute, the old, the sick, and the brokenhearted. Were the Lord not to heal our hearts, there would be no ability at all in us to love. God help us!

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