Fertile Ground

A grateful heart is fertile ground

When we strive to interact with members of our family, with our friends, our coworkers, and all others, with respect, humility, and dignity, we lay the groundwork for the abundance of Grace needed to quicken our heart for the things of God. The soil is prepared for the planting of seeds that allow us to respond to God’s grace, for a grateful heart is fertile ground for the things of God.

When we open our hearts to others with gratitude, the path is prepared for a relationship with Jesus Christ, and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit will fill us with the power to live lives that are transformed by God’s Grace. We will then be filled with heartfelt gratitude for all God’s gifts, and inner peace will be ours.

The preparation for sowing the seeds of the love of God begins with responsive gratitude. The Apostle Paul writes, “Remember, it is not you that holds up the root, but the root that holds you up (Romans 11:18).” Our relationship with God must begin with a grateful heart, a heart that is cultivated by kindness and goodwill towards others. When we are grateful we respond toward God and others by enacting other virtues.

The constant and cultivated feeling of deep appreciation and heartfelt gratitude for others, quickens the soul to feel the inner need to freely and thankfully respond to God’s invitation to commune with Him.

With love in Christ,
Abbot Tryphon

Monday January 4, 2021 / December 22, 2020
31st Week after Pentecost. Tone five.
Nativity (St. Philip’s Fast). By Monastic Charter: Strict Fast (Bread, Vegetables, Fruits)
Forefeast of the Nativity of Christ.
Great-martyr Anastasia of Rome, deliverer from bonds, and her teacher Martyr Chrysogonus, and with them martyrs Theodota, Evodias, Eutychianus, and others who suffered under Diocletian (304).
Venerable Nicephorus the Leper (1964).
New Hieromartyrs Demetrius and Theodore priests (1938).
Martyr Zoilus (Greek).

The Scripture Readings

Hebrews 11:17-23

The Faith of the Patriarchs

17 By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, 18 of whom it was said, “In Isaac your seed shall be called,” 19 concluding that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead, from which he also received him in a figurative sense.

20 By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau concerning things to come.

21 By faith Jacob, when he was dying, blessed each of the sons of Joseph, and worshiped, leaning on the top of his staff.

22 By faith Joseph, when he was dying, made mention of the departure of the children of Israel, and gave instructions concerning his bones.

The Faith of Moses

23 By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden three months by his parents, because they saw he was a beautiful child; and they were not afraid of the king’s command.

Hebrews 11:27-31

27 By faith he forsook Egypt, not fearing the wrath of the king; for he endured as seeing Him who is invisible. 28 By faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of blood, lest he who destroyed the firstborn should touch them.

29 By faith they passed through the Red Sea as by dry land, whereas the Egyptians, attempting to do so, were drowned.

By Faith They Overcame

30 By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they were encircled for seven days. 31 By faith the harlot Rahab did not perish with those who did not believe, when she had received the spies with peace.

Mark 9:42-10:1

Jesus Warns of Offenses

42 “But whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were thrown into the sea. 43 If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter into life maimed, rather than having two hands, to go to hell, into the fire that shall never be quenched— 44 where

‘Their worm does not die
And the fire is not quenched.’

45 And if your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life lame, rather than having two feet, to be cast into hell, into the fire that shall never be quenched—46 where

‘Their worm does not die
And the fire is not quenched.’

47 And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye, rather than having two eyes, to be cast into hell fire— 48 where

‘Their worm does not die
And the fire is not quenched.’

Tasteless Salt Is Worthless

49 “For everyone will be seasoned with fire, and every sacrifice will be seasoned with salt. 50 Salt is good, but if the salt loses its flavor, how will you season it? Have salt in yourselves, and have peace with one another.”

Marriage and Divorce

10 Then He arose from there and came to the region of Judea by the other side of the Jordan. And multitudes gathered to Him again, and as He was accustomed, He taught them again.

Abbot Tryphon

About Abbot Tryphon

The Very. Rev. Abbot Tryphon is Igumen of All-Merciful Saviour Monastery on Vashon Island, Washington. Situated in the heart of a beautiful forest, surrounded by the Salish Sea, the monastery is reached by ferry from either Seattle, or Tacoma, Washington.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *