Sunday, January 29, 2017



‘‘Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God,
have mercy on me a sinner’’

How should we say the Jesus Prayer, and what do its words mean?

“Lord”: When we say “Lord” we must recog­nize the Lordship of Christ, enthrone Him in our life, in order to acquire the mind of Christ; in our heart, so that our heart be pure; in our will, so that our intention will be to be totally faithful to the Gospel of God.

“Jesus”: Jesus is the human name of God. We are profess­ing His incarnation. Do we believe it or not? 

“Christ”: He’s the fulfilment of the Old Testament. He is our King.

“Son of God”: He is truly the Only Begot­ten Son. We believe this on faith and we must test ourselves, and if we don’t believe this message, then let us tell God that we don’t, and stop our prayer. 

“Have mercy”: That does not mean, “Oh Lord, be kind to me. You know how weak I am, You know how bad I am, but You are good, and don’t pay attention to it.” Mercy is a word that implies forgiveness, or gratuity, but in response to a cry for it, to a desire, to a longing for reconciliation. It means that we are aware that our calling is great and our will is weak. We turn to God, in the way in which Paul said: “Give me strength” and the Lord answered, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness” (2 Cor. 12:9). It is the cry of being loved with severity and tenderness at the same time. It engages us very deeply to be prepared to receive from God’s hand what He will choose to give us.

“On me a sinner”: What is a sinner? First of all, a sinner is one who breaks the law of God. A sinner is one who lives in a way that makes him alien to God, puts himself to shame before God and God to shame before others. He is a man who is divided within himself, separated from his neighbour, away from God. So a sinner is someone who first of all has lost contact with God, with his neighbour, with his own conscience and finally, with his own life. 

* * *

The Jesus Prayer is something perfectly simple until we make it into a complicated exercise. “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy upon me, a sinner.”
While saying this beautiful prayer, we usually use a prayer rope with between 33 and 100 knots (or more). 
We may give a few moments a day to con­centrate on the words, and then let it go! It will soon engrave itself on the heart and become one with our breath!

How is it possible for someone to say the Jesus Prayer constantly?

Once, the Elder Porfyrios of Greece said, “A young girl used to come here and confess her sins. She was in her sec­ond grade of Junior High School. She told me once, ‘Father, I have fallen in love with a boy and I can’t get him out of my mind. My mind is constantly on him, on Nick. One would think that Nick is here, (she pointed with her finger to her forehead). I begin to read and Nick is here. I go to eat and to sleep but nothing changes. Nick is here. What can I do father?’”
“My child,” 1 told her, “you are still young. Be patient, finish school and then Nick will still be here. Now you must put effort into your lessons.” A week passed and she came again. “Dear Father, it’s impossible for me to concentrate on my lessons. Constantly all day long my mind and my heart are on Nick. Nick has become an obsession with me and he won’t go away.”
* * *

The Elder continued, “Now you must be thinking, why am I tell­ing you all this?
But answer me, please. Did this girl force herself to focus her mind on Nick? No. This happened spontaneously. This was unforced love. The same happens with us. When we love Christ with divine love, without any coercion, pressure or worry, with love we will proclaim His Holy Name, ‘Lord Jesus Christ... And when the heart is flooded by this divine love, it does not require us to verbalize the whole prayer, ‘Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me...’ Before he finishes the prayer, the heart stops at that point out of love and rejoicing. Other times he proclaims only the “Lord...” and stops. He proclaims this mystically and without speaking...”


Once an elder said to his disciple: Get in the habit of saying the prayer ”Lord Jesus Christ have mercy upon me”.
‘I say it but nothing happens’.
‘But the devil goes away’.
‘How am I supposed to see it?’
‘So, do you wish to see a miracle, my child?’
‘Yes, elder, I want to see a miracle’.
‘OK. I will pray to God, my child, to give you a sign in order for you to understand the power of the Jesus prayer’.
‘Very well’, the monk said.
The elder prayed and fasted for three days. He didn’t eat anything at all. After these three days he said to his disciple:
‘Well, my child, take this basket and go up to the spring and fill it with water’.
‘Forgive me, elder, but I’m not out of my mind. How am I supposed to fill the basket with water?’
‘My child, didn’t you tell me you wanted to see a miracle proving the power of prayer? Don’t you still want it?’
‘Yes, I do’, he said.
‘So, do as you are told. But under one condition; you must keep saying the Jesus prayer all the time. Don’t stop saying the prayer’.
‘Let it be blessed’.
And off he went. ‘Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy upon me’, ‘Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy upon me’, he kept praying. When he reached the spring, he put the basket under it. The water was filling the basket without leak­ing. Never, not for a moment, did he stop saying the Jesus prayer. All this time his elder remained in his cell praying to God to show his disciple a sign. Finally, the basket was full.
When the monk saw what had happened, he started running. He wanted to run to his elder to give him the news: ‘Elder, the basket is full of water!’ While he was de­scending the path, the devil appeared disguised as man and said to him:
‘Where are you going, monk?’
I’m going to my elder’.
‘What is your name?’
‘How long have you been a monk on the Holy Mountain?’
‘Five or six years’.
‘What handiwork do you do?’
‘I carve prosfora seals’.
That was it! The water poured all over the place! As soon as he stopped praying and began blathering, the basket emptied. So, he went to his elder with an empty basket!
‘What is wrong, my child?’ asked his elder.
The disciple told him the whole story.
‘My child, you stopped praying. That’s why the bas­ket emptied. Do you realize that all the time you were saying the Jesus prayer the basket was holding the water? The moment you stopped praying and started blathering the water was poured out of the basket’.