I am currently reading some of the homilies of John Chrysostom (347-407) and will be posting selections from his insights into scripture. For those unfamiliar with this particular saint, a brief description may prove helpful.
As Archbishop of Constantinople, he was a well known bishop and preacher from the fourth and fifth centuries in Syria and Constantinople. He was famous for his eloquence in public speaking and his denunciation of abuse of authority in the Church and the Roman Empire of the time. After his death, he was named Chrysostom, which comes from the Greek word Χρυσόστομος – “golden-mouthed.”
For confusion arises within us, not from the nature of circumstances, but from the infirmity of our minds; for if we were thus affected by reason of what befalls us, then, (as we all sail the same sea, and it is impossible to escape waves and spray,) all men must needs be troubled; but if there are some who stand beyond the influence of the storm and the raging sea, then it is clear that it is not circumstances which make the storm, but the condition of our own mind. If therefore we so order the mind that it may bear all things contentedly, we shall have no storm nor even a ripple, but always a clear calm.
- Gospel of John, Homily 3.2