Proof of our righteousness in God is a peaceful spirit, which the Holy Spirit generates in the righteous soul. If you do not have this peace, which means that you have no righteousness. You are governed by fleeting impressions, and do not explore into the depths of God’s judgments, Holy Scripture, and the whole history of the Church which witnesses to them. I will not try to soothe you with persuasion, nor examples, nor with my own experience, because you do not have the main source of peace in your soul: a firm and undoubting faith in God’s Providence, and in the fact that the head and rudder of the Church is Christ Himself. You have nothing but doubt about everything.
What is Providence? It is one of the basic characteristics of God – to see all that is going on, was going on, and will be going on in the future as though it is the present, and to have omnipotent concern for safeguarding all creation and wisely managing all its manifestations. St. John Damascene describes it thus: “Providence is Divine will which maintains everything and wisely rules over everything.” If we examine any kind of events and manifestations without looking into their causes and consequences, then many things may seem random to us. If, however, we look at them from a true point of view, i.e. if we judge the things happening in the world from the viewpoint of Divine intelligence, then we will see that there is nothing in the world that occurs randomly, that occurs without the will and the Providence of God. God’s mind is infinite and encompasses everything that we can fathom. The Almighty God penetrates and sees all places in a single moment: the height of the heavens, and the width of the earth, the depth of the sea and the unfathomable abyss.
Could it be that the Lord makes mistakes, or perhaps He does not govern the world at all? Could it be that those who blew the winds of “freedom” into the Church are the only ones who truly care for it?
The daily Gospels and Epistles answer your questions, and I begin to wonder: could it be that you do not read the Scriptures? Could it be that all the powers of your soul, mind and heart are spent entirely on contemporary periodicals?
Everything that is going on in the world is not a revelation. All must come to pass, and the Second Coming is approaching, while people will be saving their souls up until the world’s last days, according to the promise. Some will be saved, others will perish. Their main saving activity will be: preserving the faith. Our soul and heart should be anxious over our own faith, and the faith of those who are entrusted to our care. The lines, Thy faith hath saved thee, go in peace (Luke 7:50), and According to your faith be it unto you (Matt. 9:29), sound throughout all time.
Without faith there can be no peace. Everyone saves himself in his own field. Human mistakes — yours, mine, the synod members’, the Patriarch’s — are all before God’s judgment. But God’s judgment and man’s judgment are not the same. How often it happens that what seems to the inflamed mind to be a mistake is shown in God’s good time to be a holy work, and the laborer is crowned with a wreath.
So judge for yourselves! By God’s will both saints and sinners depart from the field of battle — those who built and those who destroyed. Could you or I pronounce judgment upon how they lived? No, and again, no! But I know one thing for sure: I will have to answer for myself. Mainly I will have to answer whether or not I am doing what I am blessed to do, whether I am saving myself like a true slave of my Lord, and whether those who have been entrusted to me are being saved around me.