October 6

True prayer, then, cannot be attained without divine grace. If the true God does not condescend, the one who prays will be unable to commune with God’s Spirit. The paths of prayer are intricate and he who prays meets with opposition from many angles. His corruptible body has not the strength to raise itself to the level of the Spirit; his mind is not sufficiently enlightened or inspired to surrender to the Great God and Savior Who ‘raiseth the dead’ (2 Corinthians 1:9) and thereby leap over the confines of fear, doubt, falsehood and ignorance. Furthermore, his social environment and its proud ethos of self-justification, which is ‘abomination in the sight of God’ (Luke 16:15), is not conducive to prayer. The spirits of wickedness, moreover, cannot bear the saving work of prayer. For prayer draws the entire created world back from its fall, and accomplishes man’s sanctification.

~Archimandrite Zacharias

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