Abba Agathon said, “If someone who is angry were to raise the dead, God would remain displeased with the anger.”
Sayings of the Desert Fathers
The most difficult part of our Christian life is found within us – our inner life. It is certainly the case that many of the outward things we do – acts of charity and the like – have a great effect on our life – but at the end of all things there remains the inner struggle to keep the commandments of God. It is Christ’s teaching that everything, both good and evil, emanate from the heart of man. God is a merciful God and will not deny us the grace to find healing within our heart – but we cannot be healed if we pretend there is no problem. Thus the prayer, “Lord, Jesus Christ, have mercy on me a sinner,” when prayed with honesty, from the heart, forms the prayer that we need most to say. It is not repeated throughout the day because we need God to hear us – but because our heart needs to speak the truth and not forget the nature of its need.