Koinonia (koinonia) wrote,

"The liturgical service takes place on earth, but it belongs to the realm of heavenly realities. In fact it was not instituted by a human being or an angel, but by the Spirit Himself, so that those who are still living in the flesh should think of performing the service of angels. O what mercy, O what love of God for human beings is at that moment grasped by the hands of all and does not hesitate to give Himself to anyone who wants to embrace Him and be bound to Him. He Whom the eyes of faith perceive is possessed by everyone."

St. John Chrysostom.

My devotion is not constant. That to me is the most damning charge I can level against myself. That I come and go with fervor, blowing now hot now cold. And in truth, that's probably more objectionable to God than if I just blew all hot or cold.

And it's not that I care less. Or that I'm *bored*. It's that there's this sense of stillness. Not in a good way, just this sense that the words that came to life just a little while ago in the liturgy are nothing more than words now. That I don't love them for what they really *are*, but for the music, or the incense or the candlelight. Or something.

Oh, yes, part of me is so ready to sneer that Orthodoxy is just another fad. Like being pagan or being a vegetarian. That I'm going to drift from one thing to the next for the rest of my life. And that's terrifying to me. I don't want that. That's the death of the soul right there, always searching for new sensations, new thoughts and feelings, and never moving below the surface.

But don't I also damn myself with that sneer? Don't I also *make* it come true, by being so afraid that it will come true? I don't want to be a dabbler. I want to be like Lucy and Peter and Edmund, in Aslan's country, in the final battle. Moving ever further up and deeper in. And I have a feeling that I can, but I have to push. I have to get beyond this Sargasso sea where nothing moves, and the wind does not stir.

I discovered that I don't like fasting. Well, no, that's not true. I *like* fasting. I don't like how my hands shake or how I feel dizzy, and I don't know how to get beyond that. If I could get beyond that, and stop feeling so stupid and weak, when I'm in NO danger of starving, not if I fasted for forty thousand years, I think I wouldn't mind feeling hungry at all.

I cozen myself into doing things, into breaking a true fast, and eating an abstinent meal. Into having some trail mix. Into drinking loads of tea. And that's not right. That's not how it works.

Okay, enough self kicking. I've indulged in everything else, and I am NOT going to indulge in despair. Tomorrow is a new day. And tomorrow I will do better. I will work *better* not just harder. I will not let my head be turned by ennui. I will go further up and deeper in.

And I'm going to start tonight.
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