Thursday, May 19, 2016



“Whom having not seen, you love, though now you do not see Him, 
yet believing, you rejoice with joy unspeakable” (1Pet. 1:8).

We have not seen Him, yet believing we rejoice!

     Peter the Apostle beheld Christ with His eyes and loved Him and in this passage he is praising those who love Him but have not seen Him with their own eyes. We may think that seeing Christ with our eyes make it easier to love Him. But love without physical sight is beautiful and sublime. For whether we see Him or not has no affect on our love for Christ. He is the one who formed us in our mother’s womb, and who nourishes our entire lives. 

     We died to the old man in triune  baptism, and coming up from the water with the risen Christ into His glorious Resurrection!  We repeatedly receive Him into our being by communicating with His body and blood. We keep Him in our minds and hearts with the fervent longing to be with Him to the close of the age.  We frequently pray to Him and we study and  absorb His words in the Holy Scriptures.

     We also show our love for Christ by praying to Him together in the church and also in our homes. We love him by beholding His eternal presence with the Father and are enlightened by His light which illumines our souls. Christ is the life and light of Orthodox Christians, enlightening our minds and warming our hearts with His limitless love.

     Although we have not physically seen Christ, we can certainly have Him dwelling within us just as we can always dwell in Him. Christ is seen not only with our eyes but with all our being for He is our God and Creator and the source of our being.

     Our relationship with Christ depends on the intensity of our love, and we can test our love in the following way. Each day during our prayers we can test our love, by how well we keep Christ’s commandments during our daily lives. For He says to us all:  “If you love me keep my commandments.”   By conducting our lives as He teaches we show our great respect and deep love for Him, our kind and merciful Teacher.

    We can do as did a woman who is betrothed to a wonderful husband, and while he is away she remains faithful and thinks and yearns for him most of the time. When we conduct our lives a according to Christ by knowing and keeping all His commandments we show the love in our hearts for Him who  we do not see with our physical eyes, yet His great love continuously fills our minds and hearts. 

     Knowing Christ to be the eternal Son of God born eternally from the Father and in time as Jesus Christ of the Holy Virgin Mary and we glorify Him, the only Godman who is begotten of the Father before the ages.

     Loving Christ brings great comfort and consolation to our souls for there can be no greater love in our entire lives than the love of Christ, our King and our God. We see His image in the Holy Icons and we partake of Him in His flesh and blood. Experiencing His great love, we are overcome with His gladness which fills our hearts and lightens our minds.

     On the great Feast of Pascha we joyfully sing out: “Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death; and upon those in the tombs bestowing life.”  “Pascha! Great and Holy Pascha!” This Feast of feast continues for a whole week, and we sing the Paschal “Christ is risen . . .”hymn for forty days after Pascha,

     We praise the Holy Virgin with the following hymn: “Magnify my soul Christ the Lifegiver, who rose from the tomb on the third day.  Shine, shine, O New Jerusalem, for the glory of the Lord has risen upon you. Dance for joy and be glad, O Sion. And you pure Theotokos rejoice in the rising of your Son.”

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