Wednesday, February 19, 2003

Another lesson from my dear Desert Christians

An old man said, "There are monks who do many goods works, and the evil one sends them scruples about quite little things, to cause them to lose the fruit of the good they have done. When I happened to be living in Oxyrhynchus near a priest who gave alms to many, a widow came to ask him for some wheat. He said to her, "Bring a sack and I will measure some out for you." She brought it, and measuring the sack with his hand, he said, "It is a big sack." Now this filled the widow with shame. I said to him, "Abba, have you sold the wheat?" He said, "No, I gave it to her in charity." I said to him, "If you gavie it all to her in alms, why did you cavail at the amount and fill her with shame?"

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