How is patience acquired?

`Abba, how is patience acquired?`

`Patience has love as foundation. Love endures everything. (I Corinthians 13:7), says the Apostle. To bear the other one you have to love him, to suffer for him. If you don’t suffer for him, you feel him as a burden.`

`Abba, shall I speak about a burden I encounter or shall I keep quiet?`

`If you don’t speak about your burden from love, for not encumbering the others, you will keep your inner peace. This burden will bring you blessing from God. It’s preferable to be encumbered yourself instead of being so the other one because of you. Once I returned late in the evening from the procession from Cutlumus Monastery. I was very tired and I had some powerful pains because I had some problems with my back. When I arrived at the hut I saw that there was waiting for me an old man of 85 yo who wanted to stay overnight at the hut. He had left his suitcase a little bit farther because he couldn’t lift it. Adter explaining to him that he couldn’t stay overnight at my place, I carried his suitcase on the shoulder and took him to the guests house that was at a distance of half an hour of climbing. I also gave him 500 drahms for expenses. I endured a bit but afterwards I felt peace, because the other one had found his peace too.`

`Abba, when the nun with whom I work is nervous I pity her and have patience with her. Is this a loving behavior?`

`How do you know that is not you the reason of her nervousness and she is the one who bears you? If you think that you’re in a better spiritual condition and that you bear her, then you shoul pity yourself. When there is true love and patience then you justify the other one and accuse only yourself.

`My Lord, I am the guilty one! Do not mind me! Take me aside and help the other one! This is the right attitude, the attitude full of humility and as a result of this the man receives the grace of God plentifully.

I’ll pray for you to become spiritually as a lionet, as the bronze lions that support the candlesticks of the church on their backs and they are not bothered, they don’t hear, they don’t speak, only raise the weight on their backs. Amen.

Source: Pious Paisios the Athonite, Passions and virtues, p. 291-292.

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