Everyday Ironies: Finding Salvation In The World

One of the biggest stumbling blocks many of us in the world face (by “in the world” I mean “not in a monastery”) is that almost all of the Orthodox spiritual advice written in books is written by monastics for monastics.  Therefore, a certain amount of discernment is called for, a certain amount of adjustment is needed, a kind of retuning of the material to fit a different key.  Those who are…

What Does Asceticism Look Like?

One of the temptations of being an Orthodox priest and pastor is to present a view of the spiritual life and the ascetic path by which one develops his or her relationship with God in the Church as if it were essentially one thing, as if there were only one way for everyone—and I knew what that way looks like.  A lot of the reason for this, in my own experience, has…

Following In Christ’s Steps

Immediately after the Apostle Peter recognizes Jesus as the Christ (something revealed to him from heaven), Peter rebukes Jesus for saying that He must be rejected and killed, (something inspired in Peter by satan).  Even the Apostle Peter, even immediately after a heavenly revelation, could not accept that the way we enter into the Father’s Glory, the way we experience the Resurrection, is through suffering and death.  Jesus, however, assures us that…