Purifying the Heart and Preparing for Jesus' Dwelling
By Archdeacon Habib Guirgus
Wool, in its early stage, can be dyed with any color you want; in the same way, virtue can be acquired when the person starts during his youth.
It is like dawn
which reveals a gorgeous morning.
Your soul is like a zest garden. Clean it to accept the grace, and become available for Jesus' dwelling.
Shut your heart towards any sneaky serpent, lest it showers your heart with its poison.
Watch and beware of "the little foxes", to grow and flourish and be filled with good fruits and a sweet aroma. Then, Christ will come and dwell in your heart with His holy glory.
If an honored guest visits you, you will probably prepare your place and furnish your house, clean your belongings, put your bedroom in order, bring out the precious chinaware, and scent the house with good fragrance.
Is it appropriate that the king visits you and finds the house filthy, dirty, with bugs and spiders all over, and awful smell fills the place?
If your soul is this house, and the distinguished, honored guest is the King, Emmanuel (God with us), would it be possible to invite Him and all His angels to dwell in you, while your heart is attached with profanity of this world, and the smell of sin reeks from it, and the evil spirits and thoughts proceed from it?
Purify your heart first (cf. 2 Timothy 2:22), clean it, watch and beware. Safeguard it from the lusts and impurities that are in the world.
Purge it with fragrant virtues, and the aroma of grace. Then, when the "couch is green" (Song 1:16), you can call the Heavenly Groom to rest in it.
Do not let the smell of the world enter the inner part of your heart. Blessed are you if you prepare yourself for Jesus, decorate yourself, and care for the dwelling of the heavenly and divine Groom, Jesus Christ.
Miserable and wretched is the person who conducts himself in evil and misdeeds; his heart will be filled with thistles and spoilage, foxes will foster it, the beasts will dwell in it, and wolves will tread and corrupt it.
Be on guard and do not let the world deceive you, and its lusts trick you. Do not allow or accept anyone other than Jesus alone to dwell in your heart. As soon as you prepare a place for Him, He will come to you and show you His spiritual tranquility and inner comfort. He will grant you peace, which is above and beyond the mind, inner joy, which is unspoken of, and will be your charming companion.
So, prepare your heart to receive this Groom, for He said; "They who have My commandments and keep them are those who love Me; and those who love Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love them and reveal Myself to them... Those who love Me will keep My word, and My Father will love them, and We will come to them and make Our home with them" (John 14:21, 23).
Do not let your heart be attached to anything, so Christ alone can reign over it. Let Him be the "all-in-all" (I Corinthians 15:28) to you. Let Him be the center of your soul's searches; and when Jesus reigns over your heart and all your inward parts, then you will acquire everything and receive true happiness. You will never be in need of anything, for you have the Pantocrator - that is, the one who controls everything.
All that is in the world shall pass away and vanish, but Christ never changes, nor ages, nor ends.
"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever" (Hebrews 13:8).
|| The Orthodox Faith (Dogma) || Family and Youth || Sermons || Bible Study || Devotional || Spirituals || Fasts & Feasts || Coptics || Religious Education || Monasticism || Seasons || Missiology || Ethics || Ecumenical Relations || Church Music || Pentecost || Miscellaneous || Saints || Church History || Pope Shenouda || Patrology || Canon Law || Lent || Pastoral Theology || Father Matta || Bibles || Iconography || Liturgics || Orthodox Biblical topics || Orthodox articles || St Chrysostom |||| Bible Study || Biblical topics || Bibles || Orthodox Bible Study || Coptic Bible Study || King James Version || New King James Version || Scripture Nuggets || Index of the Parables and Metaphors of Jesus || Index of the Miracles of Jesus || Index of Doctrines || Index of Charts || Index of Maps || Index of Topical Essays || Index of Word Studies || Colored Maps || Index of Biblical names Notes || Old Testament activities for Sunday School kids || New Testament activities for Sunday School kids || Bible Illustrations || Bible short notes
|| Prayer of the First Hour || Third Hour || Sixth Hour || Ninth Hour || Vespers (Eleventh Hour) || Compline (Twelfth Hour) || The First Watch of the midnight prayers || The Second Watch of the midnight prayers || The Third Watch of the midnight prayers || The Prayer of the Veil || Various Prayers from the Agbia || Synaxarium