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Godís Mercy, Grace, Faith, Prayer.

1. In remembering Godís greatness and boundlessness, let us not despair and think that we are too insignificant for His love. Similarly, in recollecting the frightening depth of our fall, let us not doubt the possibility of restoring within us virtues that have been deadened by sin. Both one and the other are possible with God: to descend and enlighten our mind through guidance, and also to restore virtues within us.

1. If suddenly temptation overtakes you, do not blame the person through whom it came but endeavor to understand the reason for its coming ó then you will achieve reform. Be it through him or some other person, you still had to drink the bitterness from the cup of Godís judgment.

1. In reflecting upon the benefits of Godís judgment, a wise person gratefully endures

all misfortunes that befall him, not blaming anyone or anything except his own sins. The unwise person, when he sins and then suffers for his sins, grumbles at God or people, not comprehending Godís wise providence.

1. Like doctors, when treating various physical ailments, do not prescribe one medicine to everyone, so does God, in treating our spiritual ailments, apply more than one suitable type of ministration. But He does cure every soul with medicines that are specifically beneficial to it. Let us thank Him for curing us, even though the medicine did inflict suffering upon us.

2. He who has perceived the weakness of his nature has also perceived through experience the helping power of God. And such a person, having already accomplished some good deeds with this help and endeavoring to perform others, will never try to abase others. Because he knows that just as grace had helped and liberated him from many passions and misfortunes, by Godís will, it is powerful enough to help all the other people, and in particular those that have given themselves unto God. Although the person is not released suddenly from his passions, the Merciful and Mankind-loving Physician does heal everyone that hastens to Him.

3. He who believes and doesnít fulfill Godís commandments is one that believes blindly. Because, if Godís commandments are light, then it is evident that he who does not fulfill them remains without it, supporting a groundless and not genuine knowledge of God.

4. Fear of God is twofold: one is born from the threat of punishment. This engenders sequentially in us: abstinence, patience, hope in God and absence of passions, from which love is born. The other fear is joined with love itself and brings about a feeling of veneration, so that this love does not exceed itself in boldness and start neglecting God. In this way, one type of fear is virtuous and the other ó impure. Fear that arises from sinning and the expectations of suffering is impure. Having its beginnings from the acknowledgment of sinning, it will not last forever but disappear with the dissolution of sin through repentance. But virtuous fear, free of dreaded agitation caused by sins, will not leave and always remain in the soul because itís mysteriously bound with God, manifesting a natural reverence before His greatness.

6. A pure prayer produces 2 types of elevated consciousness. One is experienced by people leading active lives, the other ó contemplative ones. The first type of elevated state that comes to one who prays is from fear of and genuine trust in God, while the other ó from love of God and great purity of heart. The symptom of the first is that a praying person can exclude from his mind all earthly thoughts, praying without any distractions or disturbances, standing before God Himself. The symptom of the second is when the mind of the person praying becomes enlightened with Godís great light. Then that person feels absolutely nothing ó neither himself nor anything around him ó except The One Who, by His love, is enlightening him. Being in such a state of enlightenment, the person receives pure and clear knowledge of God.

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