Share Spiritual Wealth
“If there is a rich man, and he makes a costly repast, he spreads out of his wealth and the treasure that he has, and is under no fear that he will run short of anything. … The poor man, who has no such wealth, if he wishes to provide a repast for a few friends, has to borrow the very dishes, the drapery, and everything else. … When it is over, he gives back to each person that which he borrowed. … He himself remains poor and naked. …
“In the same way, when those who are rich in the Holy Ghost, really having the heavenly wealth and the fellowship of the Spirit in themselves, speak to any words of truth, when they impart spiritual discourses to any souls, it is out of their own wealth and out of their own treasure; …. and they have no fear that they should run short. … But one who is poor [in spiritual wisdom], and does not possess of the wealth of Christ, and has no spiritual wealth in his soul,… even if he wishes to speak a word of truth, … yet not possessing it in himself, but only repeating from memory, and borrowing from various parts of the Bible, or what he has heard from spiritual people, … he himself remains naked and poor, having no treasure of the Spirit for his own, upon which he draws.” ~St. Macarius the Egyptian
Having Spiritual Wealth
The main point that St. Macarius is making is that before we can share spiritual “Wealth” or spiritual knowledge with others, we must have it in ourselves. He further says that it should not be second-hand spiritual wealth, which is to say, sharing the knowledge of others rather than that which is in ourselves.
This doesn’t mean that you can’t tell others you believe in the Bible and quote some favorite passages. Nor does it mean you can’t quote some modern spiritual guru. The important thing is that you must give credit to the author of the quote and be sure that you know it and practice it yourself before recommending it to others. Just reading spiritual writings doesn’t make you spiritual. Just quoting from someone else’s spiritual experiences doesn’t either. Continue reading “Spiritual Wealth Should be Shared”