So who is ill?
.. I recall people I met in June 2011.
…I was sitting on the bench at the bus stop and waited for my spouse to help her bring some food. A man of my age approaches and asks for a few rubles to buy a bottle of beer: "The pipes are burning" -he told. I refuse to “help” him as I do not want to indulge in his vice.
. And I have remembered Vassiliy, Vassen’ka... He is very sick: central paralysis. He is over forty and my countryman. I saw often him standing near the grocery store with his head being always turned to the left ... When you talk to him, he tries to straighten it, but he cannot. I know in my own experience what kind of pain you have when a cramp reduces the muscles of the neck: once , after a lot of medication, I had this kind of spasm. Only the ambulance saved my life.
- Vasya, what I can buy for you?
-I have everything, he told. A wonderful answer, by the way.
- So why are you standing here?
- I am bored at home.
- Vasya, do you go to church?
- Yes, I do.
I really saw him once in the church when I came to my home town Slantsy.
-What do you like to eat?
He told it and smiled brightly like a child. And I saw has very bad teeth. But it is really difficult for him to treat them!... I brought to him the favorite thing: a bar of chocolate. He opened his pocket and showed by gesture: put it down! I wished to him health from all my heart. He smiled to me. God help him!
…And this is Andrey. He is young and homeless man, and he told me caming from Pechory (Pskov Oblast). The clothes are dirty and worn, there are bruises on his face. Unfortunately, there are bad people who beat unfortunate homeless people. If they knew they make it against the God. After all, the Savior also had no shelter. I bought some food for Andrew ..
-Are you baptized?
-I don't know - he replied.
So like this a human who has an immortal soul, lives, and does not know whether he is baptized or not ...
.I remembered seeing a video taken about a sick homeless man being on the street who could not put on…(I am sorry)… pants...and who was crawling on his knees on the sidewalk ... And the people who uploaded this evil video in Internet, they commented it with devilish mockery of the poor look of the unfortunate .. If only they knew how disgusting was this conduction before the God ... and that what kind of retribution they will have for it ...
-. Here is another man ... I know him rather well. Therefore I will give here to him another name. Let it be Michael. He is married, has a daughter and a prayed son (he and his wife prayed on the tomb of a dead righteous priest to give them a child). He has a work and the apartment. He told me that he had problems with the wine, but could put the end to it: he much believed in God, and the God helped. Michael began to help in the church as an altar man. And he felt in the temptation, he felt in love with a free woman, so much that he could not refuse this feeling. Yes, I know that we, the men, are weak sometimes when we fall in love. He went to the house of that woman and lived. His HOMEYMOON MONTH (she was with a small child – and he told I NEVER WAS SO HAPPY!) became a WORMWOOD bitter for his wife. And this "nice" woman set a condition to him never meet the children. And so Michael realized that he had made a BIG mistake. He came back in the family. It is good that the wife could forgive him as she was a Christian woman. But there are no many of the woman as she is. And I feel like saying to him: why didn't you think about the children? After all, there was no blessing of the God to leave the wife with children ...
The wife (our wives forgive us so many things!) forgave him, but how much she suffered ... Men, look at your gray-haired wives – is notyour fault that they turned gray?... Now his wife comes with the children to pray the God and he prays at home ... But our house is not a holy church and no Liturgy can take place there. And of course, there are no at home the Blessed Sacrament. And our prayers at home are rather weak, not powerful, especially when you pray alone. The prayers are often scattered. The ordinary thoughts often run between words. When you pray without a Holy book, you forget the words and when you try to find them to pray, you search for a long time, so you are distracted.
.. And I remember another people ... I remember a woman, she is my friend's sister, and she is not baptized as their parents did not baptize when she was a child, and when you are 40 years old, IT IS NOT EASY to be baptized and to begin the struggle with sins in your soul. A man tries to understand the incomprehensible things by his mind, and the Demon, in order to push the man away from the salvation, shows the sins of the priests. After all, they make sins sometimes: they can be too austere or inattentive as they have many charges, or they have common weaknesses like the pride and the vanity ... The priests have more temptations than we, ordinary people, and their work much harder than our wor, and the pretensions to them claims are big and special .. Try yourself to pray! I tried once in the altar when the priest gave me a sheet of paper with names. This is incredibly difficult, because you want so much that every person should have God's help! And you, yourself are responsible for this! You have no right for distraction, for another thought but the prayer.
. And so, the demonic doubts do not allow making a salutary step towards the God, although it is a turn of loss of relatives and diseases, and problems in the family: children dare scold the mother openly in the face almost obscenely, and even obscenely ...
.I think we maybe need grieves to come to God. Then we will leave all doubts in our strength, rightness, immutable truth, and take a step towards the undestanding of our sinfulness,that we have lost our way and got lost in the deep forest, and no one but the Savior will help ...
And Vassen’ka is healthier than many of us. Because physical weakness is often given to strengthen faith in God, and it is a constant help to our soul from God. Because like myself, i am a sinner, when I am at home, I seat and read the prayers (in orthodox church people pray God only when the stand) due to illness this year at home), I think only about one thing : the God, plaese hear me. After all, You see that I am glad to stand and pray, but there is no strength in my legs.
Servant of God, Alexander. June 2011
Some corrections were made in July 2015.
Translated into English by me on 9 November 2018.
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