In the Orthodox Church

I’m Christian so I smile

Make me to hear joy and gladness, Let the bones which You have broken rejoice.( Psalms 50: 9)

In this chaotic, foreign and quite stiff world, every day I see how sadness is born easily in our inner blanket. Blanket covered by states and noble feelings, by infected memories and melancholy. In reality, we can’t be otherwise than sad. Someone once told me with great conviction that we cannot be happy all the time because when we will be elated, we’ll find out that everything was just in our imagination, an ephemeral illusion. This statement rose many thoughts in me. Thirsty thoughts that still haunt me.

Let’s start from the previous premise, that we can’t be happy in this society. Let’s see… what things, facts or events had generated this sadness in our hearts?

It’s been a long time since the crisis became an exhaustible topic, so there’s no point to exhaust it once more with my idle words. Otherwise, the same daily dish is consisting of rapes, murders, thefts, accidents, losses, kidnappings…all are known. Why are you sad? Teenagers are increasingly sad because of the poor results obtained at school-leaving exam, prospective students because of the failure, teachers because of the exams, unemployed due to lack of jobs, elders because of incapacities and diseases and the list goes on.

But Christians… wait, what does this have in common with our sadness? Are not Christians those mentioned above? Or, to be “a Christian” has become, recently, a job?

At the very beginning, when I entered in the Church, I asked a single question: “why do people smile?”. Well, don’t imagine that everyone was laughing, on no account. On the most of the faces around me could be read a single word: happiness. I didn’t understand too much at that time. I thought it is fashionable to be happy in the House of the Lord and to show this to everybody.

But the truth wasn’t in my dull thinking. To be Christian means to smile no matter the difficulties of life that gradually push us, no matter the amount of sorrow, bitterness and anguish. In the Church, the Holy Spirit is the one who gladdens the heart and lights the faces, so smile is a result of the state of calm and peace.

“I am Christian so I smile”. Christ loves me, I smile! The essence of Orthodoxy is love, and love spreads happiness. How can we be so sad when we have all this? We should rather grieve because of our sins, crimes and because of the darkness in which our souls stay even by now, from early life. But in no case because of the events we encounter in life.

If we grieve for our own mistakes and sins, the grief will turn later in happiness and rivers of relief. As the Apostle says: “You will grieve, but your sorrow will be turned into joy”( John 16: 20)

Nobody says it’s easy, on the contrary, the struggle with ourselves is the hardest fight, the hardest possible war. But if we win, the results will be as we had expected. In fact, there is no measure, because Kingdom of Heaven has no measure and no limits. Some say that to overcome your fear is a mighty thing; I think that to defeat your sadness and to put off this dirty clothes forever is something unbeatable.

To sum up, I remind you a phrase full of wisdom of Ecclesiastes; by reading this, I hope that God will flow into your souls, His immeasurable grace, His unsurpassed joy, His infinite and eternal love. Amen.

„Don’t grieve your heart, remove the sadness from it. Because from sadness comes death and sorrow of the heart weakens the virtue”.

In Philokalia, Taisie the Libyan and African says: „Lack of pleasure arises sorrow and the pleasure is bond with passion”.

(Ionela-Georgiana Tofoleanu)

Translated by Badea Patricia Elena



One thought on “I’m Christian so I smile

  1. amen

    Posted by tiva82 | October 1, 2012, 3:01 pm

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