Surfing the Chunder

Dawn Patrol on Kauai Beach – 2023
Chunder is a surfing term which means totally unsurfable waves.
Mullering means wiping out.

You don’t need to be polite with God, simply pour out your heart before Him. ~ Elder Sophrony of Essex

Never expect anyone to understand you, only God.
~ St. Gavrilia

I pray like this: “Father in heaven forgive me, Lord Jesus Christ have mercy on me, Holy Spirit enlighten me.”
~ Gerontissa (Eldress) Galaktia

Let us remember
that pray’r is the first resort –
not the last resort!

🏄🏽‍♀️

Thank You God

Sunrise on the Reef ~ Kauai 2023

Thank you God, for giving me this morning!

Each Dawn’s a Blessing!

Sing unto the Lord a new song and His praise from the end of the earth, ye that go down to the sea and all that is therein… ~ Isaiah 42:10

Which made heaven, and earth, the sea, and all that therein is: which keepeth truth for ever… ~ Psalm 146:6

Every morning open a new page and put your signature on the blank. Whatever God wants, let Him write. ~ Gerontissa Gavrilia

May we grant Jesus – the Author of Life, to direct our day.

Let us Focus Forward!

Reverently & Peacefully

Golden Bamboo Grove, Kauai 2023

Photo Art Quote excerpt from the Morning Optina Elders’ Prayer. Full Prayer here.

Pray sincerely to the Heavenly Father; especially say the Lord’s Prayer, reverently, peacefully, not hurriedly: in general, read all the prayers quietly, evenly, with reverence, knowing before Whom you are saying them. ~ St. John of Kronstadt (My Life in Christ)

My Life in Christ is a wonderful book… bursting with practical and spiritual tidbits. One can pick it up at any time and read small portions. It’s like a great golden dollop of butter accompanying our Daily Bread. I highly recommend owning a copy of these spiritual yum yums!

May we all have good and mindful dealings with those who surround us today, whether in person – or thought! With love in Christ.

Branches of Inner Stillness

Photo shared by Irena

Silence fosters stillness; it is indispensable for stillness. Inner stillness, however, goes beyond silence insofar as its aim is to purify the heart and issue in pure prayer. That purification involves the body in its entirety, because body and soul, like mind and heart, are ultimately inseparable. In the words of St. Mark the Ascetic, “The intellect cannot be still unless the body is still also; and the wall between them cannot be demolished without stillness and prayer.” Silence is the prerequisite for inner stillness, and only inner stillness enables us truly to listen to God, to hear His voice, and to commune with Him in the depths of our being. Yet silence and stillness are, like prayer itself, gifts that God can and wants to bestow upon us. The greatest truth about us is that God has created us with a profound longing, a burning thirst for communion with Himself. We can easily pervert that longing into an idolatrous quest for something other than God. Yet God remains faithful even in our times of apostasy. Like the father of the Prodigal Son, He always awaits our return. Once we begin that journey homeward, through repentance and an ongoing struggle against our most destructive passions, God reaches out to embrace, to forgive and to heal all that is broken, wounded and wasted. He reaches into the very fabric of our life, to restore within us the sublime image in which we were made… ~ Fr. John Breck

It’s coming to that amazing time again of recharging our spiritual batteries together. With purpose, we prepare our own humble journeys home to the Greatest Christian Feast of Feasts, Holy Pascha (Easter), the Resurrection of our Lord God and Saviour Jesus Christ. Travelling the quiet routes of the Great Lenten roads ahead, we choose to make bright efforts in good faith, and to the best of our abilities. Our dear Lord desires us to come to Him and fill us with good things… now and forever!

Tomorrow is an invitation of God’s Grace.

Tomorrow is Forgiveness Sunday.

However, today, I bow to you in spirit, bending the knees of my heart, and ask you to please forgive me.

God forgives!

Isn’t that beyond wonderful? God FORGIVES!

May your upcoming Lenten Journey be Peaceful… and may your Branches of Inner Stillness bear Good Fruit.

With Love in Christ.

A Little is a Lot

Image by Myriams-Fotos from Pixabay

If you can help a person – help, if you cannot help – pray, if you do not know how to pray – think about the person in a good way! And this will already be a help, because godly thoughts [towards others] are also alms! ~ St. Nikolai Velimirovich

And He looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the treasury, and He saw also a certain poor widow putting in two mites [very small copper coins]  So He said, “Truly I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all; for all these out of their abundance have put in offerings for God, but she out of her poverty put in all the livelihood that she had.” ~ St. Luke 21:1-4

Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. ~ 2 Corinthians 9:7

It often seems those who possess the least (materially), are the most generous with others. Digging deeply into the pockets of their hearts, they’ll happily give away their own last “widow’s mite” to someone else… who, to them, appear to be in greater need.

God’s blessings abound, when we (without judging what others may do with what we give them, and without expecting anything in return) give from our needs, and not from our surplus.

It’s doubly blessed to give alms in memory of someone by saying, “Please accept this in memory of (Name).”

If we have no material alms available to give, we can always share the Gladsome Light and Love of Christ – through a warm smile, a kind word, and heartfelt prayer offered to God, on their behalf.

…And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ ~ Acts 20:35

 For I was an hungered, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungered, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. ~ St. Matthew 25:35-40

Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. ~ St. Matthew 5:7

What Are We Looking For?

Image by Παναγιώτης from Pixabay

When we are coming to church what are we looking for? Fish in the desert? No, we are looking for that hidden “inward meditation” of the heart which unites us to Christ… The same thing happens in the church where you are mystically and sacramentally united with Christ. In and through your inner meditation on these things they will become a reality… In order to find Him strive to enter into that hidden, inner meditation and you’ll see that He’ll come of His own accord. You’ll see the heavy stone roll away from your heart and He Himself will rise! ~ Elder Aimilianos (The Way of the Spirit)

Through Stillness

Image by John from Pixabay

Monastery in Meteora, Greece

When you go forth, guard what you have gathered. When the cage is opened, the birds fly out. And then we shall find no further profit in stillness. ~ St. John Climacus (The Ladder of Divine Ascent)

Love of God proceeds from conversing with him; this conversation of prayer comes about through stillness, and stillness comes with the stripping away of the self.  ~ St. Isaac the Syrian (The Syriac Fathers on Prayer and the Spiritual Life)

True wisdom is gazing at God. Gazing at God is silence of the thoughts. Stillness of mind is tranquillity which comes from discernment.  ~ St. Isaac the Syrian (Homily 64)

Give Something, However Small…

Image by Myriams-Fotos from Pixabay

Give something, however small, to the one in need. For it is not small to the one who has nothing. Neither is it small to God, if we have given what we could. ~ St. Gregory Nazianzen

Someone recently shared; when they’re driving past a street person, they’ll pray for them with all their heart, “Lord have mercy on (that person or him or her).” A poignant consideration… perhaps that might be the only prayer offered on behalf of that soul for today – or ever.

If unexpectedly walking by someone in need, with nothing material to give at that moment, we can always share Christ’s Love – even through the joyful gift of a warm smile.

Good Deeds, however small, are never lost!

Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. ~ St. Matthew 5:7


Sprigs of Prayer

Thriving in Son Shine!

A drop of prayer is worth more than a sea of worrying. ~ St. Nikolai Velimirovic

There is no need at all to make long discourses, it is enough to stretch out one’s hands and say, “Lord, as You will, and as You know, have mercy.” And if the conflict grows fiercer say, “Lord, help!” He knows very well what we need and He shows us His mercy. ~ Abba Macarius

Since God is continuously present, why do you worry? For in Him we live and move. We are carried in His arms. We breathe God; we are vested with God; we touch God; we consume God in the Mystery. Wherever you turn, wherever you look, God is everywhere: in the heavens, on the earth, in the abysses, in the trees, within the rocks, in your nous [eye of the soul], in your heart. ~ St. Joseph the Hesychast

Lord, I do not know what to ask of You. You know better than me what my needs are. You love more than I know how to love. Help me to see clearly my real needs which I do not see. I open my heart to You. Examine and reveal to me my faults and sins. I put all trust in You. I have no other desire than to fulfill Your will. Teach me how to pray. Pray in me. Amen. ~ Prayers For All Occasions

He Always Hears Us!

This is my favourite icon of Our Lord Jesus Christ! It’s from the ancient St. Catherine’s Monastery on Mt. Sinai and dated mid 6th century. The medium of Encaustic/Wax was used, and it’s the earliest remaining Byzantine-style icon of Christ the Pantocrator… which means Christ: the All Powerful, the Lord of Hosts, God Almighty, and Ruler of All.

God loves us more than a father, mother, friend, or any else could love, and even more than we are able to love ourselves. ~ St. John Chrysostom

Prayer unites one with God, being a divine conversation and spiritual communion with the Being that is most beautiful and highest. Prayer is forgetting earthly things, and ascent to heaven. Through Prayer we flee to God. ~ St. Nektarios of Aegina

Do not think that you have a right to complain when your prayers are not answered. God fulfills your desires in a manner that you do not know. ~ St. Nektarios of Aegina

If God is slow in answering your request, or if you ask but do not promptly receive anything, do not be upset, for you are not wiser than God. ~ St. Isaac of Syria

Do you know what a great gift it is that God gave us the right to speak to Him every hour and moment, wherever we are? He always listens to us. This is the greatest honour we have. For this reason we must love God. ~ St. Porphyrios

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