It is easy to lay before the feet of a worthy master, whose wisdom and virtue are evident to us and known in the world. Doing so hardly wounds our pride, and the reward of obedience to one whose victory rests assured likewise rests assured. Yet Christ showed Himself in low and unassuming places and entreated us to serve Him by serving the least of people. If we are living with dynamic compassion we are hopefully watchful for opportunities to do so in real life, with real people, every day. We ought to do so without praising ourselves for our magnanimity, but
instead with humility and sincere love as befits a disciple of Christ. Since we don’t in practice meet every person everywhere, past, present, and future every day, we condition our souls to the scope of the charge by addressing the entire human race in prayer, on the feast of All Souls.
Lust and gluttony rival our aspirations to be spiritually alive as we are physically. Sloth, greed, and envy tempt us to seek self-gratification at any price, even at the expense of others’ welfare and our own goodness. Wrath and pride distort our view of our own siblings under God into our own adversaries; in truth, it is all of these frailties in our being that are given to us by our real Adversary within us, who challenges us to reject Divine Law every hour of every day since he exposed Adam’s disobedience in the Garden. From the Adversary, from our own faults, and from the misery, agony, suffering, and death that threaten us in this world as its present condition and also our own, we are all in constant need of the Lord’s protection, comfort, and redemption. This is true for each end every one of us, regardless of faith, past, present, and future.
If it will be our hope to receive this protection and comfort, and forgiveness for our sins and triumph over our weakness, we are fairly commanded by our Master Jesus to forgive as we hope to receive forgiveness, rather than to judge as we dare not to be judged; we are charged to serve, and to give, as it is what we do for the Lord’s children that we do for Him. Let us protect others with our prayers and our aid, to better deserve the Lord’s protection. Let us offer aid and comfort to others, to better receive aid and comfort from Almighty God. Let us forgive our fellow peoples’ sins so that our own debt may truly be wiped clean.
The day after we raise our hearts to the many known and unknown masters and superiors who the Lord is known to favor, we extend that prayer to the rest of us. The fallen and imperfect, gross and common, unsanctified except for by the grace of God, who makes the chief cornerstone from the stone that the builders refuse. This is the grace that we require, so let us make it real by offering it to one another.
By the grace of God, I am Mor +Clement. May our Lord be with you.