The Arena
The Arena

Episode · 9 months ago

The Precious Cross - Balm of Our Souls


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A Heart for God: Lessons from the Life of the Holy King and Prophet David 

Now available on Audible! Sermons on the Spiritual Life by St. Philaret of Moscow 


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Now availale at Patristic, necter,Donord, putristic nectar publications presentsa heart, for God, lectures on the life of the Holy Prophet and King DavidChristians are indebted to no one in the Old Testament more than the HolyProphet and King David. He alone, amongst all the believers in theancient covenant is described by the Lord as having a heart for God. DavidSin, an infany second only to that of Adam, has been meditated upon mybelievers, as has David's deep repentance, which has provided an imagefor countless penitents to imitate over the centuries in order to find peacewith God in these ten mutchers other desiasurveys, the entire life of King David, from his early rise as a humbleshepherd to his years and hiding from Song to the magnificent covenant thatGod cut with him, which provided the prism through, which believers havecome to understand. He, who is the ultimate son of David, the true King ofpins, who reigns on David's throne at the right hair of the father, the onewhose heart is gentle, imperfect, Jesus Christ, the Lord for these and other available titles.Please visit our website at Patristic, nectur, dador and now the arena with Father JossiahTrenna, in the name of the father and of theson and of the Holy Spirit a blessed lords. They tall of you,brothers and sisters on this third Sunday of the great fast when we bring out the precious and lifegiving cross I've entitled my Homle, the Cross, thebomb for sinners, and I want to share something thathappened last night at thre and forty four. Am It's not been a good week for my sleep and it that continuation of bad sleeps ihappened again last night, three,forty four, I heard screeches and a terrible smash. Wasn't that unusual? Actually, it's been a a feature in my twenty plus years downtown. I ran outside with a flashlight only to see a car kind of pulling backonto the road and then trying to get away. CAPLA come up Bo Kopop, tire pop wholefront right panel, completely broken...

...pieces everywhere on the ground, butthey thought maybe it'd be a good idea to drive away, and I met my neighbor out there. They had come down the street and run into a fire hydrate, and then they pulled down the road alittle bit and stopped, and I was out there conversing with the neighbor,whose bedroom was twenty feet beyond that fire Hydrante, his pregnant wife was in bed and he wasout there with me and then they decided to come back ourway, so they turned around and they came back and we just stood there and just wave as they drove off as theydrove off. It reminded me of the time that I think I mentioned to you someyears ago when it also in the middle of the night, I heard a car at high speeds coming right towards myhouse. You know downtown, you know my house literally, is that you you runinto my house. If you continue up street. Thankfully I have a large wall in front of my house made of thesemassive lime stones back from the early days of o Riverside and the car came, and obviously thethief did not know the area that there was a ta and a stop sign. He thoughtthe street just continued. So he just ran at full speed right into my wall and by the time I got out there, he wascrawling out the broken window and hopping down the street trying toescape or then there's the time when, in the middle of the day, car camebarreling down and went through the Stop Signe and smashed into the back ofone of my sons, friends who had just arrived and parked his car and comeinside or maybe there. If the time my wife wasout watering and she heard a car coming down thestreet and it just somehow, it was coming down with our wall onthis ride, and just I must he use the phone or something sent a text, andthat was the last thing he did because his car just caught on the wall andcompletely smashed right into the wall. All of those stories together. Besidesletting you know how much interesting activity there is in my neighborhood in each case, I thought to myself aboutmyself and I did last night I saw that poor car such a distant. It was a Mercedes, such a distant poor image, of what it was meant to beand what it was just a few minutes before making all this noise nothing workingright anymore. I thought to myself kirialeson welcome to the human race welcome to the human race. This isexactly us,...

...don't we know it and isn't this the purpose of the firstthree weeks of great lent. We have our enthusiasm Grov for thegreat fast. We know that it's a time of immensegrace, lots of miracles, so many beautiful things that you get what yougive what you put some effort into it God's going to reward you big time,we're going to be able to come to posca with so much happiness, and we come with that enthusiasm whenwe launch into pure week this yeare, I gave you a challenge,those of you who were willing to take it up and thank God many of you wereI'm touched by- that we are attempting to go through all ofthe days all forty days of length without speaking about someone else'ssin. We have all this enthusiasm. I wonder how r you all doing on that challenge. I am very serious about it and I am soashamed of myself and I was so ashamed of myself on pure Monday. How? How did I sin on pure Monday, not eating or drinking, and there it was- and I just looked atmy ever vigilant, helper known as presyteric Catherine and she's, justshaking her head at me. Didn't you say: Yep Yep I did Yep, I did and that wasn't the first time were not what we were made to bebrothers and sisters. We're all banked up were like those messed up cars. U We were made more glorious than anyMercedes. Ever was our hearts were full of the love of God.Our minds were prophetic, able to pierce, meaning and discern intentionand see the logals or the the structure of every aspect of God's creation. We were honored by the mountains andthe trees and the hills and the rivers and every animal that existed, thebirds loved us. Even the Great Lions, bowed down beforeUS r. Our life was glorious. We had a closeness to God. We wereliterally robed in royal garments, the Holy Spirit, dwelt upon us. We were intelligent like there is nilkto morrow.

We were powerful, we had no needs Adamand e didn't eat because they were burdened by hunger. They weren't burnedby the sun. The Sun did what they asked just like when the propit Joshua askedthe sun to stop and that holiness in his life, which was a picture of Adam,how he was really fashioned. The Sun cooperated in for twenty four hours.Didn't move stayed right there. This is what we're like, and this iswhat we're going to be. One of the worst results of the godlessevolutionary secularison that we live in is that we actually think this iswhat it means to be a human being. This is it we treat the fallen reality.We treat the car after the horrible accidents like that's how it came outof the factory, not true, not true. We have had serious damage, which is why we have lent, which is whywe have the church, which is why we have the mysteries an of the sacredsacraments. It's why we have the word of God. Weare in process of restoration, but wow does the first weeks of lent do theyhurt. I thought of a verse that Saint Paul wrote when he wasreflecting on himself for those of you who have been goingthrough our Roman study on Wednesday night you're going to hear it thisWednesday, because this Wednesday is chapter seven and it comes from ChapterSeven. This is what Saint Paulis has listened to this for what I am doing, I do not understand. Let me just stop there. Can you relateto that for what I am doing? I do notunderstand. I confuse myself every day by doing things which I don't believein. For goodness, I don't believe intalking about people sins, let alone after I've challenged my parish to joinme in a task and then failing day one. I understand what Paula saying for what I am doing. I do notunderstand, for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate. I know that nothing good dwells in myflesh, for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not oh.Doesn't that hurt. I find the principle then that evil ispresent in me, the one who wants to do good, you, man. This is sint Paul, a man who scaled the heights, a man who was so god loving that he was willing to go tohell to save people even prayed God. If...

...they could be saved anyone sent send me.Can you imagine this is the first lesson I think of thefirst opening weeks of lent. We learn many many things and ourwretchedness is the first and brothers and sisters. That is a must lesson. If we don't get that lesson, nothing that Jesus has to offer us is going to make anysense at all. The church isn't going to make any sense. If we don't give thatlesson the lesson of our wretchedness. My second point is that as much as that hurts the reality of things, I hope the youcan take this from me and I'm speaking mostly about myself as much as that hurts the reality ofthings is way way worse way. Worse, just because I found outthis pure Monday in such an obvious way and through the dutiful help of my wifeand then later of my own children, aren't they wonderful? Yes, they are. I wish I always thoughtso when they were correcting me. I found out lots of things but brothersand sisters what about all the things? I don't know what about all the wretchedness thatI'm not even clued into, and I'm not just obviously falling over myself infront of my family for them to correct me with what about all that? What about all the hidden wretchedness?We have a very dim vision, I'm only talking about what I can actually see.Never believe that the sins that you see are the sins that you have never believe that when you come to confession, don't sayat the end. That's all father really you' sure about that. Maybe you could add that I know. That's all that I know assume in fact brothers and sistersthat what you know as a minority and if you can take it from me, assume it's atiny minority. Think of all the people that Jesus describes in Matthew TwentyFive on the last Great Day of judgment when he separates the sheep from thegoat, there's a huge mass of goats there's a huge mass of sheep, but when our Lord explained to thegoats all the things they did wrong, he tells them six major sins. What wastheir response every time?...

When did we ever do that? When do we not do that? When did we notdo this Wende? We not. They were completely blind to their own sins.Just because they didn't know them doesn't mean that they weren't there.They were very obvious to Jesus. He saw them as clear as they can make the one jost so as clear as they. This is the second point. We only see a little tiny bit this much. We do not want any bad surprises onJudgment Day. We want to face ourselves brothers now,and this is why the church is asking us to do this. Allthoug t thease thingsI'm describing mission accomplished. This is exactly what lent, for this isthe result of grace. What do you want to see in your life? Don't look forvisions, don't look for you know, wonderful things about the future to besome profetess or some profit, so you can see ind Jovine, the future. Thefather say. If you want to see anything, ask God to show you your sins,something you can do something about and have salvation. We don't want any big surprises on thatday, and so we have to face ourselvf. Now we have to discover who we are. Wehave to embrace the reality of being sinners now and then we can be broughtby the holy church to this wonderful. This glorious this unspeakably graciousday the day of the precurous cross, theveneration of the precious cross placed in the wisdom of the church are kindlymother right in the middle of lent marking to halfway point, becausethat's what the cross marks today, fifty percent done. Fifty percent doneand the first half of making progress it's coming to grip with ourselves. Now we can be shown the ladder nextweek once we really believe that we are waydown low, I mean, if we think we're already like by birth, on rank numbertwenty nine. What's the latter going to do for you right, but if we recognizewe're weyd down low, that latter is very helpful. All thesteps, the guidance on how to become a loving person, how to become a good holy God lover. Then we can see Mary of Egypt, a womanwho floated above the ground when sheprayed a woman who shows us what repentancecan do today. All of the lessons of great lentare joined into one at the foot of the cross. The Cross tells us both of those things.That's why it's in the center,...

...nothing in the whole world tells us thetruth about ourselves as sinners as the cross, and nothing in the world tells us about the solution. The Cure for our wretchedness, then the cross. It bears witness to both things. How bad are our sins, so bad that we could not be saved, except bythe son of God, descending from Heaven and dying on a cross for us? That's howbad they are. If there was any easier solution, it would have beendone. There was none. There was no solutionfor us, except that and how do you measure how sick you are, except by the extremity of the remedy, if you have to go through months of radiation, just to get yourtumors small enough for the doctor to go in and do a twelve hour surgery just so that you can come out and maybehave a ten percent survival rate and that's what they tell you? What is yourconclusion about how sick you really are pretty sick, pretty sick and that's exactly what youshould think of when you see the cross, if there was no solution for us, except for the unthinkable, the son of God, to be given to us by his father, and we cant even describe the love thatthe sun has for the funer way past. Our grasp will learn it byexperience through eternity by sharing in it, but God loved us so much that he waswilling to give his only begoten son so that whoever believes in him mightnot die but live forever. This is the measure this is the extremity of the remedy, and the Cross also bears witness to theall powerful and immeasurable love that God has for us and for every singlehuman being. How unwilling, God was to see us perish how unwilling, God wasto see us get what we deserve for our sins and pausevery clear in the very text that I'm I read from earlier. He says the wages what we deserve. All of us. UF SIN isdeath. God was totally unwilling for us to paythat price, so he paid it on our behalf. He took all of the things thatthreatened us and threatened to take us away from him. He took them on himself.He bore every sorrow for us. He bore...

...every sickness for us. He bored sin forus. He fore death for us. He bore the assaults of the devils. He swallowed them up. He dissolved them all by His grace gave us life so that we can be restored.We can be what we're meant to be fashioned into the gloryo gloriousimage of God. This is the promise. This is what God has done and Paul's able to say this, neither death nor life nor angels norprincipalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers nor heightnor depth, nor any other created thing is able to separate us from the love ofGod, which is in Christ. Jesus our Lord. This is the bomb brothers and sistersfor our very humbled souls when you look at that cross. Rememberthe love of God, for you, God's willingness to come for you I'll end with the beautiful scripturethat I love from the proverbs goes like this, like cold water, to a parted soul. So as good news from a distant land like cold water to a Partsoul, so isgood news from a distant land. There is no more parched soul. Then one of US sinners, understanding, aure brokenness. There is no more part Sol than thereand there is no more distant land for a broken sinner. Then the land,where God lives and the holy live in the Kingdom of God, and there is nomore good news that the Gospel the word of the Crossfor a part's soul. So far from that glorious land, bringing the news that the water of life has come and it's flowing from the cross of oursavior from his very side Ha Shesh goritosting. We hope that you have enjoyed and havebeen edified by this presentation offered to you by Patristic Nectar,Publications, a nonprofit organization committed to nourrishing thespiritually thirsty with the sweet teachings of the Holy Fathers. If you are interested in otheravailable titles or if you would like more information on patristic nectarpublications, please visit our website at www, dotpatristic, nectar, dot, Orgagain, that's www, dotpatristic, nectar,...

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