Once a demon met St. Macarios the Great and said to him, “Macarios, what do you do more than us by sitting in the desert? I reside in the desert, too; you fast, but I never eat; you pursue poverty, but I own nothing; Ah, Macarios, you have one thing that vanquishes me that I am unable to resist.”
“What do I have?” asked Macarios.
“HUMILITY! It burns me!”
And as soon as he said this, he disappeared.
Let us make a little effort to acquire this saving virtue. The effort consists of constantly beseeching our God, Who is able to grant us everything. Let us be assured that we shall receive this virtue when with pain and patience and persistence we knock at the door of mercy, which opens easily when we use the key of the wronged widow in the Holy Gospel. 1 Let us shake off the burden of indolence, and let us imitate the clearsightedness of the deer by quickly hastening to our God at every temptation and by seeking His assistance. In this way we can defeat Goliath the barbarian and glorify the majesty of the kingdom to which we belong—the majesty of the kingdom of God.
1. Lk. 18:2-5
subm. no. 7
paragraphs: 27, 28, 29, 30, 31 from pages 232-233
From the book
Councels from the Holy mountain
Selected from the letters and homilies of Elder Efraim of Arizona
Selection of passages from the book by Silviu Podariu