Fr Faltaous El Souriany · suffering

The heavenly glory of enduring tribulations

Admin: This story shows us that when we endure tribulations – which, absolutely ALL tribulations are permitted out of God’s love, providence and deep care for our salvation and eternal glory – with patience, joy and giving glory to God for the tribulation, we will acquire heavenly treasures and boost our eternal glory. That is, the suffering and tribulation bears eternal fruit, eternal revenue and eternal blessings, and hence as pious Christians, we can derive extraordinarily great meaning, great value, great purpose from enduring painful and bitter tribulations, rather than bemoaning the meaninglessness of it all and growing despondent or dejected. Thus it becomes not a matter of “Why God, why?”, which every single person does out of spiritual immaturity and recklessness, but rather a constant “Thank you God” or “Grant me strength and patience O Lord” or “Strengthen me my sweet Lord Jesus” or “Glory to Thee O Lord, glory to Thee”, or praying in other forms such as using the Jesus prayer, crying out to the Virgin saying “Most Holy Theotokos x y z”, or using relevant psalms, or singing hymns, or praying out soothing and relevant bible verses.

Once the fathers of the Sourian monastery wanted to ensure the wellbeing of Fr. Faltaous, especially because no one ever saw him, and they were worried about him living alone in such a desolate part of the monastery. They knew how difficult it must be to live in that daunting area, especially because they knew the extent of the fierceness and ruthlessness of the devils and their wiles – against any monk who longs to lead a solitary life dedicated to God. Hence because the monks wanted to ensure that he was doing well, and they wanted to see him, they decided not to set any fruits or vegetables aside for him (along with the salt, bread, seeds, and beans), so that he is forced to emerge from his cell. This way when the monks see him they will know that he is alive and well. Being denied any fruits or vegetables caused Fr. Faltaous to experience severe constipation, and his bowel movements became were very painful.

One day, his stomach was in pain, to the point where he felt very sorry for himself and he began to cry. He emerged from his cell and he headed straight to one of the churches in the Sourian Monastery and he stood over the altar and cried. He cried until the altar was drenched with his tears. He was praying to God and expressing all that he was suffering from; he asked God to sustain him and to help him. As he was praying, a very luminous angel appeared to him, and he began to strengthen and console him. The angel told Fr. Faltaous that every single tribulation he experiences throughout his path of struggles and perseverance has a reward from God, for He does not forget a cup of water. “And whoever gives one of these little ones only a cup of cold water in the name of a disciple, assuredly, I say to you, he shall by no means lose his reward.” (Matthew 10:42) Afterwards, the angel left him in a state of joy, and Fr. Faltaous left the church feeling new – as if he could jump for joy.

After he walked out of the church, he saw a small garden in front of the church, which had some leafy green vegetables planted in it, and they looked somewhat like peppermint. Fr. Faltaous could not believe his eyes, nevertheless, he came closer to the garden and he ate from the greens. They tasted wonderful, and he thanked God and glorified Him for His great gifts. He then took some of those greens back with him to his cell so that he could save them for another time.

Ref: The star of the Sheheet Desert – Fr Faltaous El Sorianny – His life and miracles (Part 1), p. 19 (pdf index)

Many other good articles and teachings can be found here relevant to this very important and tense topic, which would massively help someone to understand and hence prayerfully and gratefully endure the unavoidable, necessary, useful, sanctifying trials and tribulations of life:
> The deeper the sorrow, the closer is God
> How to bear sorrows
> Health, sickness and closeness to God
> Why doesn’t God heal all the sick?
> Why don’t miracles happen to everybody?
> The life and trials of St Luke of Crimea
> Search intelligently through the search engine on and for relevant articles
> The books of Mother Erene. I’ve posted some extracts on this website, find them here.
> Probably all detailed and well-written accounts of lives of the saints e.g. the life of Fr Mina Aboud Sharobeem by Anthony Marcos, the life of Mother Anastasia – a model of enduring pain, the life of tant samira, etc.

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