Fr Zacharias in Wichita (Pt 4)

You can back up to the last part for previous links.

“The Stages a Christian goes through to realize hypostatic nature — to come to the mystery of the Christ”

Man is called by God.

There is a specific calling for every person.

This calling is implanted in created nature; it is the hope of the hypostatic principle.

God seeks man at every stage of his life, wherever he may be.

And man only has to open to Him and He will begin the process of rejuvenation.

The heart may also be moved by the loving prayers of the Saints.

The First Stage is accomplished by feelings and experiences in the heart:

undertakes every good work with ease
knows sweet peace of reconciliation with God
“Personal Pascha” (from death to life)
initial grace similar to the perfect; the grace of the Saints

Second Stage:

withdrawal of grace (if not schooled in this withdrawal, man may be akin to an unbeliever)
God allows the temptations that follow to be for our regeneration
man undergoes chastening as a son
unless the Lord teaches us, we cannot see that we are immature
God, in His providence, chastises us in His absence (to prove His perfect will)
the most obvious result of God’s withdrawal is our own pride. God cannot tolerate it; He must abandon so as to allow Man the perfect freedom
man can no longer return to the blissful ignorance he knew before grace
eternal life has been revealed to him as the only [goal] of this temporal life
— suffering is the sign of election.

God never ceases calling Man into His heavenly kingdom
the final stage of Man’s spiritual struggle is Christ Himself
it is through grace that deification is accomplished

This second stage teaches us that salvation is a gift from God, we cannot attain it on our own.

when Christ is within us it is easy to pray
when He withdraws, if you continue blessing and glorifying Him, even unto threats of death, this shows that our life is one that overthrows death

More later …

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