“God designed the human machine to run on Himself. He Himself is the fuel our spirits were designed to burn, or the food our spirits were designed to feed on. There is no other. That is why it is just no good asking God to make us happy in our own way without bothering about religion. God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing.”
– C.S. Lewis
“O Most loving Lord Jesus, who dost invite me to give thee my heart, and hast commanded me to love thee with my whole soul; I most earnestly desire to do thy will. For whom have I in heaven but thee? There is none upon earth that I desire in comparison of thee. For thee my heart and flesh faileth, thou art the God of my strength and my portion for ever. Thou art the fount of all love; and thy banner over me is love.Thou hast thought of me from all eternity; thou hast created me, and redeemed me, and dost guard and keep me day by day. O most loving Lord, can it be that such wonderful love should not move me to such poor return as I can make thee? Yes, Lord, I will love thee, because thou didst first love me. I will try to love thee as thou hast commanded, with all my heart, all my mind, with all my soul, and with all my strength. I would that henceforth neither tribulation nor distress, nor persecution, nor life, nor death, nor any created thing should separate me from thee. Quench then by thy Holy Spirit all love of the world and myself, enable me to bear thy sweet yoke, that I may learn of thee to be meek and lowly of heart. Make me to realize my own nothingness, that I may learn to esteem others better than myself. O meek and humble heart of my Jesus! O Heart of love, teach me to love thee now and through all eternity. Amen.”
– St. Augustine of Hippo
“How is unceasing prayer possible? When we are singing the Psalms, when we are reading the Scriptures, when we are serving our neighbor, even then it is easy enough for the mind to wander off after irrelevant thoughts and images.
Yet the Scriptures do not require impossibilities. St. Paul himself sang the Psalms, read the Scriptures, offered his own apostolic service, and nonetheless prayed uninterruptedly.
Unceasing prayer means to have the mind always turned to God with great love, holding alive our hope in Him, having confidence in Him whatever we are doing and whatever happens to us.
That is the attitude that the Apostle had when he wrote: ‘Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?”…
Thanks to this attitude of mind, Paul prayed without ceasing. In all that he did and in all that happened to him, he kept alive his hope in God.”
– St. Maximos the Confessor, The Ascetic Life
“Never seek to correct each other with anger, but only with humility and sincere love, because one temptation does not cast out another temptation. When you see anger ahead, forget about correcting for the moment. Once you see that the anger has passed, that peace has come, and that your powers of discernment are functioning properly, then you can speak beneficially.
“I have never seen anyone corrected through anger, but always through love; and then, he will even make sacrifices. Therefore, this is how you should act. Take yourself for example: how are you pacified — with curses or love?
– Elder Joseph the Hesychast, Monastic Wisdom: The Letters of Elder Joseph the Hesychast
“Peace can never last on earth if God becomes meaningless to people. Christian efforts for peace must therefore concentrate, among other things, on making clear the hierarchy of values and the hierarchy of evils. Working for peace must mean teaching people to recognize what makes for peace… For only the kingdom of God can effectively counter war and violence; only where God’s kingdom comes near can peace grow and flourish. Prayer, therefore, is an essential part of Christian efforts for peace. ‘Deliver us from evil. Deliver us from every evil and give us peace in our day.’ ”
—Joseph Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI), Seek That Which Is Above
“Anger is an indication of concealed hatred, of grievance nursed. Anger is the wish to harm someone who has provoked you. Irascibility is an untimely flaring up of the heart. Bitterness is a stirring of the soul’s capacity for displeasure. Anger is…a disfigurement of the soul.”
– St. John of the Ladder, The Ladder of Divine Ascent
“We should not become angry with those who sin, even if what they do is criminal and deserves punishment. On the contrary, for the sake of justice we ought to correct and, if need be, punish them ourselves or get others to do so. But we should not become angry or excited, for anger acts only in accordance with passion, and not in accordance with good judgment and justice…The wicked must be punished for the sake of what is good and just, but not as a result of the personal passion of anger.”
– Saint Anthony of Padua