How should we conduct ourselves in the evening before sleep?

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尼古拉前执事
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How should we conduct ourselves in the evening before sleep?

Post by 尼古拉前执事 »

This is from the Russian Inok monthly english mailing:

HOW SHOULD WE CONDUCT OURSELVES IN THE EVENING BEFORE SLEEP?

In the evening, when your daily business should be finished, by no means give yourself over to rest, no matter how much the activities of the day have tired you. It is unbecoming for a Christian to act ungrateful this way. When you have finished your business, lift up your thoughts to the Lord God and sincerely thank Him for all the good things that you have received from Him in the day that is coming to a close, that is, for having remained alive, for your spiritual and bodily strength, for your health, for food, for drink, for all soul-saving thoughts, for all holy desires, for earthly and heavenly light, for help and protection-in short, for every good thing.

When you sit down to dinner, always start and finish it with a prayer, as you do at lunch.

After dinner, just as in the morning after breakfast, occupy your heart with spiritual thoughts. For example, you may properly say to yourself, "I am now a whole day closer to death. What if it is the Lord God's will to call me during the coming night before His righteous Judgment Seat? Would I pass the test? In the morning I intended to pass the whole present day in a holy way, but did I? Have I somehow angered the Lord God?"

After questioning yourself like this,

a) pray in your heart to the All-Holy Spirit that he may enlighten your mind and help you to remember accurately and in detail how you passed the day now coming to a close. That is, how you got up in the morning, how you got dressed, how you said your morning prayers, how you conducted yourself at work in the morning, how you conducted yourself during lunch, during rest after lunch, and in your treatment of your family, neighbors, and strangers. Especially, how did you conduct yourself with any person who is perilous for you, or in any circumstance that is perilous for you: did you expose yourself then to sin, or did your intentions to avoid sin weaken? How did you conduct yourself when you were treated rudely, were not obeyed, were laughed at, and in other such circumstances?

b) Pray that the Holy Spirit may help you to remember accurately what you thought during the present day, what you said, what you did, how you tried or did not try to keep the holy resolution that you made in the morning to shun sin. What especially tended to draw you into sin or even succeeded in drawing you into it? What method did you undertake against the enticements of sin, or against the obstacles to fulfilling the will of God, and why did that method turn out to be inadequate?

c) Pray that the Holy Spirit may help you to remember accurately how and why you sinned, what you failed to accomplish and why; whether you sinned by harboring foolish thoughts and desires in yourself; whether you sinned in words and deed; whether you sinned by neglecting to do something good or necessary; whether you sinned against the first commandment, against the second, against the third, and the rest; whether you took part in anyone else's sins, and so on.

d) Finally, pray especially that the Holy Spirit may help you to remember what special holy resolution you made in the morning and what helped you to fulfill it, or else what hindered or prevented you from fulfilling it and whether you took measures against the hindrances: what measures exactly, and why they turned out to be ineffective.

Our spiritual improvement depends precisely on such a diligent investigation of self. Without such a scrupulous investigation of ourselves we cannot have spiritual improvement and no one should ever dream that without it he will perfect himself.

Thus calling to mind how you acted in the past day, adhere strictly to these guidelines: everything good that you find in yourself, consider not yours but God's, for every good gift and every perfect gift is from above (James 1:17), and from all your soul thank the Father of lights for this. Every foolish thing that you find in yourself ascribe to yourself, your weakness, and your foolish habits. Quickly repent of it, ask pardon of the Lord God, and again make a strong resolution not to sin, especially by the sin that you commit most frequently and eagerly, not to forget the Lord God, and to act circumspectly always and everywhere. Especially make the resolution to keep faithful watch over the chief bad proclivity of your heart, the one that you most often detect in yourself and that you find most pleasant . Then devise the most effective methods for avoiding whatever sins you committed and use these methods conscientiously. In particular, try to devise methods against your chief sin, the one to which you are disposed most of all.

At the same time, pray to the Lord God that He may think it fitting to reveal to you the most reliable methods through which, by His Grace, you may be so strongly confirmed in your resolve and in unswerving fulfillment of the methods that you have devised that you would prefer to die rather than to commit your former sins again and to offend the Lord God again.

Metropolitan Gregory of Saint Petersburg

Translated by Seraphim F. Englehardt from the book "A Day of Holy Life, or the Answer to the Question, How Can I Live a Holy Life?
Last edited by 尼古拉前执事 on Sun 9 October 2005 3:21 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Mary Kissel
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Post by Mary Kissel »

Thankyou for posting this as well Nick, I hope to be able to do some of these things sometime soon. :)

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Quite welcome!

Post by 尼古拉前执事 »

You are welcome!
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Post by elleagwire »

Thank you for the post nick! At least I have someting add up to my evening activities before sleepin. Actually, i pray the rosary every other night. And read the bible everynight. This is something to keep us reminded that God should always come first, even before sleeping.



:wink: Elle Mayson
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spiridon
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Post by spiridon »

You know I was always taught to say the roasary as a kid, for it was dedicated to the Mother of God. there is only one Mother of God-Theotokos, she is our protector reguardless of what ethnic background or continent you live on...When we were kids, they always gave us Rosary`s to learn and keep in our possessions at all times- it was our Defensr against this cruel world and the Evil one- for it has a Crucifix at one end symbolizing God The Word-Jesus Christ, and every ten beads is read the prayer to the Theotokos, followed by the Our Father. and this is done a total of 5 times equaling 55 beads on the mystery`s
First, and Last, and Always
in CHRIST
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