“A man who receives something from another because of his poverty or his need has therein his reward, and because he is ashamed, when he repays it he does so in secret. But it is the opposite for the Lord God; he receives in secret, but he repays in the presence of the angels, the archangels and the righteous.”
——Sayings of the Desert
Perhaps the monk is thinking of what Jesus said in the Sermon on the Mount- “But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” The wonderful thing about God is that He doesn’t expect us to be showy in our worship of Him, he just wants us to be real. Most of us, whether we admit it or not, we like to be recognized for our successes and want our failures to be hidden and forgotten. Taking alms for our poverty is not something most people would brag about. The way God asks for our devotion is completely counter cultural. Our culture expects praise and in response continued favors are given, but God operates differently. He gives quietly and diligently to those who call upon Him.
- Private Prayer (hackingagag.com)
- Wednesday (June 19): “When you pray, fast, and give alms, do not be like the hypocrites” (shechina.wordpress.com)