Mar 5, 2011

Keeping Yourself Straight

The oldest parishioner of the Sretensky Monastery in Moscow is 98 years old.

The woman is always carrying two bags with one brick in each. She ties the bags to a shawl and carries them on her neck, one on her left, and another on her right side, said the abbot of the monastery, Archimandrite Tikhon Shevkunov, in an interview with the Krestovsky Most Orthodox newspaper.

"Why do you need the bricks?" I asked her. She said, "I need them for balance, otherwise I can't keep myself straight." She comes to the service from Belyayevo which is the most far-away end of Moscow, Father Tikhon adds.

The monastery has many young parishioners and almost half of them are under 45.

"I recall when elderly women first appeared in the monastery and how important their visits were for us. We did everything to make them feel comfortable and at ease, they made us all happy," Father Tikhon said.


Here is a map of the journey this dear woman makes on a regular basis.

What if we were to view the tests and trials and burdens in our lives as those very things that enable us to walk straight - that make it possible to keep our eyes and hearts fixed on God? Should we not be grateful for them and welcome them?

Lord, help me remember this dear woman when I feel overburdened with cares.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wow! That's helps put things in perspective. Thanks for the post.