People who were not just anybody but of great excellence in every respect, such as Holy Augustine of Hippo or Saint Basil and all the members of his family, surrendered themselves to God wholeheartedly holding nothing back. And God used them as His own instruments. This cannot happen accidentally. Man needs to empty himself of everything, even of things that are good, and then, fill up with things of God.
We are mean and stingy in attitude -even those of us who possess natural gifts- and we hold on to them zealously in order to support our ego.
What you do, what you think, what you occupy yourself with and give yourself to with all your might may not be sinful in itself. But do question yourself: does it pave the way to your salvation?
To a Christian, there is practically no such thing as the end of one year and the beginning of another; but, even if we take things this way, we should not always want the previous year to end as quickly as possible. This year is as much God’s year as will be the next to come.
Regardless of our bad use of time, God takes care of things so that time finally can be exploited for our salvation and blessing.
As we enter the new year, God takes us under his wing and assures us: “Whatever you are, I will heal you, I will sanctify you, I will save you, I will put you in paradise. What I want from you is the true response of a logical intelligent human being. I do not want lies, or taking spiritual matters lightly or similar attitudes”.
Holy Hesychasterion “The Nativity of Theotokos” Publications.
Archimandrite Symeon Kragiopoulos