November 13-19, 2017
Luke 14:25-35 - Now great multitudes accompanied him; and he turned and said to them, "If any one comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me, cannot be my disciple. For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it? Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation, and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, saying, `This man began to build, and was not able to finish.' Or what king, going to encounter another king in war, will not sit down first and take counsel whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him who comes against him with twenty thousand? And if not, while the other is yet a great way off, he sends an embassy and asks terms of peace. So therefore, whoever of you does not renounce all that he has cannot be my disciple. "Salt is good; but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltness be restored? It is fit neither for the land nor for the dunghill; men throw it away. He who has ears to hear, let him hear." (RSV - Gospel for the Ninth Tuesday of Luke)
Love your neighbor. But love God more. Jesus says (in Matthew 10:37): “He that loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me. He that loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.” By adding “more than me,” it is plain that He permits us to love, but not more than we love Him. He demands our highest affection for Himself, and that very correctly. The love of God in those who are perfect in mind has something in it superior both to the honor due to parents and to the natural affection felt for children. (St. Cyril of Alexandria)
The icon is a detail of Saint John Chrysostom (November 13th). On November 14th, at the conclusion of the Feast of the Holy Apostle Philip the Church begins "Philip's Fast" (also known as "Nativity Fast" and "Advent"). Forty days until Christmas!