Tuesday, January 3, 2012

How obedience leads to humility

Venerable John Climacus ~ The Ladder of Divine Ascent
Step 4 ~ On Obedience

¶55. I once asked one of the most experienced fathers, and pressed him to tell me how humility is obtained by obedience. He said: ‘The obedient man who has discernment, even if he raises the dead and receives the gift of tears and freedom from conflict, will still think that it is the prayer of his spiritual father that has done it, and he remains foreign and alien to vain presumption. For how could he possibly pride himself on what is done, as he himself admits, by the help of his father, and not by his own effort?’
¶56. But the practice of the above virtues is unknown to the solitary. For his rigours have brought him conceit and suggest to him that his achievements are due to his own effort.
¶57. He who lives in obedience has eluded two snares and remains eternally an obedient servant of Christ.

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