"Every saint has a past. And every sinner has a future. " After walking through thousands of English-language psychological forums, this quote from the drama "A Woman Not Paying Attention" (with such a provocative title it would hardly have appeared in the modern tolerant West) lost its first part, the salt of a joke that once shocked an old Victorian lady in a cap, on our native Internet spaces. Here she continued to console all those who, looking over the memories of their youth, stumble upon empty bottles, unfamiliar persons in bed and slight remorse. Like, there are no saints in sight, do not hang your nose. But leave Oscar Wilde with his aestheticized cynicism aside and try to answer the question, who are such saints and can we, sinners, approach them.
Saints, indeed, have a past. Everyone has his own. And if it seems to the person that holiness is a complete sinlessness, then it is unlikely that he understands the topic. Without sin there is only one Man in the world. He is so called - the One Sinless. All the rest participate in the struggle, they walk around the edge and do not know the future.
But it is extremely important that the sinner has a future. Man is made capable of holiness. As from any fabric it is possible to sew a robe, and from any piece of wax to plug a candle, and everyone seems to be an unsightly person who can be sanctified by approaching God. He is even called to this: sanctify yourselves and be holy, for I am holy. So it is said.
Man is created capable of holiness
And why on earth would every saint baptized "With the Saints of the Peace", if there was an insurmountable gulf between him and the faithfully known saints?
The abyss is surmountable.
Here is some small revelation: every person can be a saint.
This does not at all mean that he will become like St. Nicholas or St. Seraphim. On the contrary. This means that he will not look like anyone else. Holiness is absolutely not a pattern. There is not a single saint who imitates someone else with a jeweler's precision. And if it seems to us differently, then we again do not know.
The person who flourished in the Holy Spirit is holiness. A person because of this and the personality that another such in the world there and will not be.
Do not wait for miracles and for all apparent greatness. This is what we are accustomed to expect from holiness, only confirming once again that we are now said to be "not in the subject". The greatest of all wives born - John the Baptist - did not create a single miracle. Moses and Elijah are smaller than he, and he did not raise, nor did he heal. And there were really wonderful people like Onuphrius the Great who spent in the deserts for half a century or more, communicating only with the angels and with no one of the people. They did not have glory. They simply did not know about them. So no miracles, no loud recognition of holiness accompany is not required.
Man must be full of God. Not abstract kindness, not gentleness and fluffiness, but God. And in the measure of its depth. The inner measure of a person can be small, like a thimble. But if the thimble is full, it will be a little true holiness. If a person is like a cup and is also full, it will be a great holiness. And there are buckets, jugs, water-carriers and other containers in increasing volume. And it would be good if everyone was full. Then everyone will be holy, and everything will be different. So in the visible sky: Another glory of the sun, another glory of the moon, another star; and the star from the star differs in glory (1 Corp. 15: 41).
Holiness proves the existence of another world and the truth of the gospel.
Thanks to the holy gospel from the book, from the "simple" text turns into flesh and blood, into the breath and prayer of a particular person. The saints are the "incarnate gospel." Each individually embodies one or more citations. All together, the Cathedral of All Saints embody the Gospel as a whole.
You can ask them: Panteleimon has health, Nicholas has travel assistance, and Spiridon has solutions for housing problems. Why not ask? They are open and clean sources. It's a shame and stupid thirsty of them not to drink. But to love saints is necessary not only for the good participation in our vain life. They are worth loving for what they are; For the fact that they are a joyful revelation about how a person can be.
Everything that the world says about a person is an ideological murder. According to the teachings of proud science, a person is a talking clod of dirt, a debtor of a grave without hope of resurrection. It's hard not to bow your neck to this virtual yoke, if the school so teaches, so says the street, so the stage sings ... But in this darkness you should light a candle under the name of Sergius of Radonezh, as the false opinions begin to crawl into the corners of the chimera, and joy appears.
Holiness, after all, is joy, replaced by tears. Sowing with tears will reap with joy. With weeping the bearer of the seed will return with joy, carrying his sheaves (Ps. 125: 5-6).