Church Fathers, Day 216: St. John Chrysostom warns us to beware the life of ease

st_john_chrysostom_1Beware the life of ease

It is simply impossible, says St. John Chrysostom, to live a completely un­troubled life on earth and still make it to heaven. Even if you don’t live in poverty, temptations constantly assail you. If you live a trouble-free life, you’re not resisting temptation.

Wait a minute! Is it not possible, they say, to enjoy ease both here and hereafter?

This, ladies and gentlemen, is unattainable; it is one of the impossible things. It simply cannot be that anyone who here enjoys ease and plenty, and continually indulges in every luxury—who lives a vain and aimless life—can also enjoy honor hereafter.

Nevertheless, if he is not troubled by poverty, he still is troubled by desire, and from this cause suffers restraint—a cause that gives rise to no small amount of trouble. Again, if disease does not afflict him, yet evil passion burns within, and it is no slight pain that springs from wrath. If trials are not laid upon him, yet wicked thoughts constantly arise to vex him.

It is by no means a trivial matter to restrain lawless desire, to put a stop to vainglorious thoughts, to check unfeeling pride, to refrain from excess, to live in self-denial. And whoever does not accomplish these things, and things like them, can never attain salvation.

St. John Chrysostom, Four Discourses, 3.6

IN GOD’S PRESENCE, CONSIDER . . .

Am I duly struggling against temptation, or am I taking the easy route?

CLOSING PRAYER

Father, direct every one of my thoughts, and everything I do, so that my own weaknesses may not keep me from the peace you have promised.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________
Remember to subscribe to my feed so you will not miss a day! This recurring feature at The Catholic Blogger is possible through the cooperation of author Mike Aquilina and publisher Saint Benedict Press. To get your own copy of this book, click below.

"cum ceciderit inimicus tuus ne gaudeas et in ruina eius ne exultet cor tuumne forte ..."

Don’t rejoice when your enemies fall; ..."
"All your prayers read like 1970 ICEL schlock. But then all western/Latin catholic language soars ..."

Overcome the things that make you ..."
"There are some times when anger is justified, in the case of wanton cruelty and ..."

Control your anger before you pray; ..."
"This one area of reading the Church Fathers that requires good translation and an understanding ..."

Don’t blame your bad mood on ..."

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!


What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment