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Spiritual weakness



In the life of the same person, and throughout his

spiritual maturity, he might pass by a period of

weakness which is considered to him as being of

higher spiritual level than some passing days of his


We should find out whether this state of spiritual

weakness is permanent or is it just temporary in a

person's life…is his life always spiritually active except

some few intervals of weakness, or is his spiritual life

on the contrary always weak except for some few

periods when it is warm and active?

Also this person should find out whether this

spiritual weakness is caused by his own will, or by

outside wars? Is it a result of his carelessness, or is it

due to some external pressures?

Let's find out now the reasons behind passing by

spiritual weakness and how it attacks the soul…


1- One of the causes of Spiritual weakness is

lacking of the warmth of repentance:

A person, who has just repented, usually lives in

the warmth of his spirituals which got him out of the

darkness of sin to the acknowledgment of God. But he

doesn't usually reserve these spirituals for too long.

As days pass, he might forgets his sins, forgets his

falls and disgrace, and disregard the grace which

saved him on the first place, so he loses his

preliminary warm spirituals…!

His self rebuke soon vanishes, and his

humbleness as well, life drifts him away and he soon



David the Prophet preserved his high

spiritual life, because his sin was ever before

him, wept on it and wet his bed with his tears,

so he cannot lose his spiritual strength.

Also the Publican, who repented, standing afar off

would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven,

but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to

me a sinner.

If you were ever distant from the feelings of

repentance, and your spiritual life is weakened; listen

to Mar Avraam the Syrian's advice "He then

remembered Mary by her sin, and Israel by his

repentance." Sit and remember how much you hurt

God's heart, and weep upon your sins.

Sometimes the spiritual weakness is due to

being distant from the warm feelings and high

spirituals of repentance, because at that point

the causes which drove a person to repentance,

its effect just goes away.

The motive which leads to repentance might be

an effect of a special incident, an illness may be, a

death incidence, a temptation, this motive could be

the fear of a divine punish, or a person may be

affected by a spiritual person, by meetings or

readings…by time, this effect is less, it is forgotten or

even vanishes, then the heart falls into spiritual

weakness as a result of being apart from the warm

feelings which accompanied his repentance.

At the same time, this person might have not

even reached and felt the warmth of love. He

then becomes distant from the warmth of both

repentance and love.

􀀿 􀀿 􀀿

2- Another cause of spiritual weakness is

lacking of spiritual bonds…

And that is a result of keeping away of grace

intermediaries, like spiritual readings, contemplations,

prayers, spiritual meetings, chants and hymns, giving

alms and attending the divine liturgies, and also

drifting away from acquiring spiritual friendships.

The world at the same time is so much

negatively affecting our lives, and on the other

hand spiritual effects are not even enough to

keep equilibrium.

When a person loses his spiritual food, and is far

from positive effects, keeping away of grace

intermediaries, then his life becomes weak due to

lack of spiritual fuel which was keeping it always on.

So, you have to reconsider your life, did you

neglect something of the spiritual bonds which push

you towards God, which help reminding you of Him,

and grant you power?

􀀿 􀀿 􀀿

3- One of the reasons which causes spiritual

weakness is the spiritual growth, when it

just stops:

Growth in the spirituals gives warmth, as it is

constantly moving forward. Growth is the spirit of

progress which gives a person the strong desire of


A person whose spiritual growth stops, his

warmth as well goes away and he is weakened. This

happens when this person is happy at a certain level

at which he is and stops moving on, his life is then

frozen at that point.

The Christian perfection to which God has

asked from us when He said "Be perfect", has

no limits, so we should enthusiastically go for it.

Look at St. Paul the apostle's fight for the Bible,

look at all what was revealed to him, he was caught

up to the third heaven, and God granted him so much

miracles, wonders and signs, he said" forgetting those

things which are behind and reaching forward to

those things which are ahead". This reaching forward

to things which are ahead, was preserving his

spiritual warmth for himself, as he said "Not that I

have already attained, or am already perfected; but I

press on, that I may lay hold". This act of following

gives the soul a continuous movement; fill it with

spiritual desire, so it continues growing without


So, beware of your spiritual growth that it might

stop. Be like a battery which as long as the vehicle is

moving, its power is recharged, so it acquires more

power and give power to the vehicle as well to go



4- Another reason causing spiritual weakness is

the formalism of worship:

When the worship turns to be monotonous,

without understanding, with no soul, nor emotion,

without contemplation, turns to be work that should

be done.

The reason behind this might be the interest

to increase the amount without caring about

going into more depth.

Some worshippers want to increase the amount of

their prayers, so they hurry while praying, they don't

understand or contemplate. And their care for the

amount doesn't give them any chance to go deeper

into their prayers, and the same goes for the spiritual

readings and studying the prayers by hard.

Thus their prayers become weaker, as the desire

of increasing the amount exceeded the love of the

heart to enjoy the presence of God through prayers.

How beautiful is what St. Paul the apostle said

that he would rather speak five words with his

understanding, than ten thousand words in a tongue.

(1Cor 14:19).

Also what Mar Isaac said that if a person faces

this kind of war during praying, he should fight it back

by saying "I stood up in front of God to pray not to

prepare my words".

􀀿 􀀿 􀀿

5- A reason that may cause spiritual weakness

is best seats:

Best seats are considered one of the main

reasons which cause the spiritual weakness, because

a person loses his humbleness, consequently he loses

his soul and his spirituals.

At first he used to enter the church with much

humbleness, feeling unworthy of even entering, so he

prays deeply asking for mercy. And then he became

one of the leaders in the church, he cares for others

even if it costs him neglecting his own soul…!

He used before to read and benefit from his

readings, to apply what he learnt on himself through

spiritual exercises, but now he might only read to

prepare for a speech or to give a lesson.

He turns into a teacher or a scientist in his

readings rather than a worshipper!

He might get so busy in researches or studies

that have nothing to do with his soul's salvation.

Things that are important only for giving his lectures…

and little by little these studies might overwhelm him

thus ignoring his own special contemplations, and his

spirituals is then weakened.

Bets seats can be a source of trouble when it

involves people's appreciation, which make him forget

his sins, lose his humbleness, making his spirituals

become weaker.

􀀿 􀀿 􀀿

6- Consequently, having people entering his life

is a reason causing spiritual weakness:

Some dramatic changes in a person's spiritual life

are sometimes a result of people evolving in his life,

his interest in how they judge things and in their

opinion… those people might consider his spiritual

growth to be exceeding limits, they might see that his

strictness is a bit of suspicion, and consider his care

about something to be as if he complicates matters,

so they ask him to change, and he tries to please

them so his spirituals is weakened…

He used to do virtues as he loved

righteousness and loved God himself. And now

he is doing it in order to be a good ideal

example to other people: he stays away from

evil not because he separates evil from God, he

does so as not to offend anyone!

Thus the spiritual objective is now changed or

even deviated, and consequently the spiritual life of

this servant is weakened, as the warmth of divine

love is now away from his life, and new objectives

appeared in the way, and God is not the axis of his

life anymore.

􀀿 􀀿 􀀿

7- Deviation of the spiritual objective is another

reason that causes spiritual weakness

Like when worshipping becomes only like a

model, or turns to be a habit or an obligation, the

objective turns then to be just caring about people

and try always to please them, at that point the

service becomes a goal rather than a tool, so God and

our relation with him isn't anymore the centre of

attraction of our heart and our thoughts…

􀀿 􀀿 􀀿

8- Another reason causing spiritual weakness is

the world's overwhelming distractions

The world is so busy, most people are all the time

busy working or studying, different aspects of

activities which are means of living for many people

keeps them always busy having no time left for God

and their own spiritual life.

Unfortunately there are lots of pious people and

also servants whose life is so busy; they don't have

enough time to spend it with God!!

Their service consumed all their time, and their

life activities as well are consuming all their thoughts

and their emotions. If God might knock at their doors,

they reply "go now, and when there is enough time

we will call you"!!

They started their service on the first place

for the sake of God, and as going through it they

almost forgot God, and thought of their service

only and its matters that keep them busy so

their spiritual life becomes weak.

Few of them sit with themselves, examine where

they stand, and divide their time fairly between their

services and their spiritual life.


9- The reason which causes spiritual weakness

could be a sin or a lust:

with which when a person is captured, it takes his

love, and keeps this love always busy; God becomes

no more the centre of emotions in this heart, and

because of this lust the heat of his spiritual life which


was there cooled, and the spirituals became weak…

Everyone who feels that his spiritual life became

weak should search deep into his soul, and find out if

there is a sin which lies at the door, to which he has

granted his longings, and it ruled over him, and

occupied God's place in his heart? If so, he should

repent and get away with his life, so that he might

retain the warmth of his spiritual life…

Search for the reason which caused your

spiritual life to become weak, as the book says

"Remember therefore from where you have

fallen; repent" (RV: 2:5).


10- Pride could be also a reason that causes

weakness of the spiritual life

May be you thought of yourself being a great

thing, and when pride entered your life after

repentance, pride then entered your heart as well. So

God deprived you of his grace which He granted you

before, so that you might recognize and feel how

weak you really are and be humble instead, and

that's why God permitted spiritual weakness to come

to you in the first place…!

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