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Come To Me

Come to Me

Introduction:­

Why should I confess?

How should I confess?

When should I confess?

To whom should I confess?

● When should I confess? ● To whom should I confess? These and many other questions

These and many other questions disturb the minds of our children and interfere with their desire to repent and return to the loving-kindness of their Heavenly Father. Not knowing the correct answers to these questions becomes a stumbling block which conceals the importance of this great sacrament [repentance and confession]. Consequently, the children are deprived of the sacrament of unification with Christ--Holy Communion.

When unbelievers sense this uncertainty in our children, especially regarding the sacrament of confession, they offer advice which has the effect of diminishing their desire to repent and confess. They may also turn against their kind mother, the Orthodox Church.

My dear son and daughter, let us understand the truth. Do not be ashamed to admit your transgressions, for "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteouness righteousness"[I john 1:9]. This book is a guide to help you account for your actions and examine your intentions. In order to benefit from it, read it before every confession until you learn proper way to confess.

The Necessity and Importance of Confession

God was the first to establish the sacrament of confession. When Adam sinned, the Lord called him, saying, "Adam, where are you?" Could it be that God did not know where Adam was at the moment He called him? IMPOSSIBLE!! Of course God knew where Adam was. Adam replied, "I heard your voice in the garden and I was afraid because I was naked, and I hid myself," (Genesis 3:9-10). The Lord asked

Adam again, "Did you eat of the tree

all the world, did not know whether Adam ate from the tree? Let He already knew. The Lord purposely gave Adam a chance to confess hi sin, not only that he ate from the tree, but also that he disobeyed God's commandment, for the Lord said, "Of every tree of the garden, you may freely eat, but from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat; for in the day you eat of it, you will surely die," (Genesis 2:16-17). Even though Adam knew the truth, that he broke God's commandment and ate, he refused to confess and blamed Eve. He said to the Lord, "The women you gave to be with me, she gave me from

etc."

Could it also be possible that the Lord, God, who rules over

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the tree and I did eat," (Genesis 3:12). He disobeyed the commandment of God and refused to admit his mistake. Also in Genesis, (chapter4) we find the story of Cain and Abel. Cain rose against his brother Abel and killed him. God called Cain and asked him, "Cain, where is your brother Abel?" Again, God is asking even though He knows all things, for all things are revealed before him. God asked Cain where his brother was, even though He knew beforehand what would happen: Didn't He give Cain a chance to confess and repent from the murder of his brother and from disobeying God's commandment? yet, we find that Cain refused to confess and repent and rejected God's question, saying, "Am I my brother's keeper?" In the Old Testament we see that confession is necessary to remove guilt. Jonah said to God, "I knew that you are a gracious God and merciful, slow to anger and of great kindness and repentant thee of the evil," (Jonah 4:2). The Lord calls us daily, saying, "Come to me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest," (Matthew 11:28). He also says, "He who comes to me I will in no way cast out," (John 6:37). So what excuse do we have? Didn't He also say, "Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be white as snow. Though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool". (Isaish 1:8). There is none greater than you, Lord, nor greater than your love for us. "For God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life," (John

3:16).

God's Incantation orders Confession

Come with me and let us follow a part of the life of the Lord Jesus, When He lived in the midst of humanity as a part of it. "For we have not a high priest which can not be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin," (Hebrews 4:15). We read of the first miracle in the Gospel of St. Matthew, chapter 8, verses 2-4: "And behold, there came a leper and worshipped Him, saying, Lord, if thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. And Jesus put forth His hand, and touched him, saying, I will; be thou clean. And immediately his leprosy was cleansed. And Jesus saith unto him, see thou tell no man; but go thy way, shew thyself to the priest, and offer the gift that

Moses commanded, for a testimony unto them." It was known that leprosy was the disease of sin, and, in Old Testament, there was a special ritual for the healing of this disease. This is what David, the prophet spoke about in Psalm 51 when he said, "Thou shalt sprinkle me with hyssop, and I shall be made clean." In order to be healed from this leprosy, that person had to confess his sin to the priest. Hence, the Lord commanded the leper to "Go shew thyself to the priest." In addition, the Lord said in the Sermon on the mount, "Ye are the salt of the earth, but if the salt has lost its savour, wherewith shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill can not be hid. Neither do men light a candle and put it under a bushel, but on a candle stick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your Father which is in heaven," (Mat "

5:13-16) "Ye are the salt of the earth

improve one's behavior and good works? but how can a person perform good works? Only if he repents form evil works. And confession is an invitation to leave the path of evil and walk in the way of truth, so that the Lord's name will be glorified by the mention of our good works. My beloved, what do you think about the story of the Samaritan woman? Read it as it appears in John, chapter 4, and see that it is a beautiful story which tells of a long confession between the Lord Jesus and a sinful woman. She

Ye

are the light of the world

Isn't this an invitation to

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confessed her sins before Him. She is a perfect example of God's divine planning--that we should learn to confess our sins.

The Prodigal Son

What is your opinion of the story of the prodigal son? Read it in Luke 15. What does the word "Prodigal" mean. "I will go now to my father and say to him, father, I have sinned against heaven and "

before thee." "I have sinned against heaven

because heaven is the Kingdom of God and it alone perceives the repentance. "I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just "

persons, which need no repentance," (Luke 15:7). "And before thee

father and he is the symbol of God and was given this power from God. He is also the symbol of his Lord Jesus and His image as seen by people. For this reason, the church decided that confession in the presence of a priest is a definitive step toward repentance, so that the confessor may be absolved from his sins through the power that God has granted the priest. This God-given power includes the priest's ability to offer guidance and advice to the confessor.

The Power was also given to the Disciples

This signifies regret and repentance before confession,

because the priest represents the

What a great story we find in Matthew, chapter 9! Jesus said to a lame man "Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee. And behold, certain of the scribes said within themselves, this man blasphemeth.

And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, wherefore think ye evil in your hearts? For whether is easier, to say, thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise and walk? But , that ye may know that the Son of man "

earth to forgive sins

hath power on earth to forgive sins "

given to those who are called to the priesthood. "And when he had called unto him his twelve disciples, he gave them power against unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all manner of sickness and all

manner of disease

the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: Freely ye have received, freely give

or town ye shall enter, inquire in it who is worthy

Consider what the Lord says: "The son of man hath power on

The Lord, through His humanity, gave humans power on earth, and this power is

and

as ye go, preach, saying, the kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse

"

and

into whatsoever city

(Matthew 10:1,6-7, 11). What is the purpose of this

power to the disciples on earth? And what is the meaning of the saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand? In addition, why does Jesus say, "And into whatsoever city or town ye shall enter, inquire in it who is worthy"? It means what the Lord said to his disciples in John 20:21-23: "Peace be unto you: As my father hath sent me, even so send I you. And when he said this, he breathed on them and saith unto them, receive ye the Holy Ghost. Whose so ever sins ye remit they are remitted unto them; and whose so

ever sins ye retain, they are retained." For this reason it was necessary that the Lord should suffer and rise from the dead on the third day and that in his name should be preached repentance and forgiveness

of sins to all nations. Peter spoke on behalf of all the disciples

thee, that thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind

The Lord said to him, "And I say unto

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on earth shall be loosed in heaven" (Matthew 16:18 -19). And again the Lord gave this power to all the disciples and clarified the extent of the tie between the power of the priest in receiving confessions and the forgiveness that is dependent on confession when he said in Matthew 18:15-18: "Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between him and thee alone: If he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: But if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as a heathen man and a publican. Verily I say unto you, whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."

My Beloved

Now, what do you think of the sacrament of confession? Don't you feel that it is a divine matter, as you saw in the stories of the sick of the palsy and the Samaritan woman? Don't you also feel that the reason for the salvation of the thief who was crucified on the right side of Jesus was because he felt guilty and repented and confessed before the Lord Jesus? Hear what he said: "For we receive the due reward of our deeds: but this man hath done nothing amiss. And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom,"(Luke 23:41-42). Therefore, the disciples received the power and used it. "And many that believed came, and confessed, and showed their deeds, (Acts 19:8). Now you have seen that confession must be done in the presence of a priest according to the power the Lord Jesus gave him. "Whose so ever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose so ever sins ye retain, they are retained," (John 20:23).

What Inspires me to Confess?

Suppose you disobeyed your father. For example, suppose that he told you not to leave the house, but you

left

father, especially since you are living with him under the same roof, and you must return to the house, knowing that you disobeyed your father's commandment? Your father's feelings will be those of anger because you disobeyed him, and you will feel unhappy--you will feel that you have lost his love and support. In this case, you do not dare to ask him for anything. You can not ask him for your allowance or even for his love for you. In other words, you have separated yourself from your father. There is now a conflict between you and your father and you are deprived of your father and his love. The one who can not tolerate this situation or bear this division between the father and the son is the mother. The mother is in a very difficult position: Once she will ask the father to forgive his son and another item she will ask the son to make amends with his father. She will facilitate an encounter between the father and son. She will encourage her son to go to his father so that he may make peace with him. When they meet, their disagreement will end and the love between them will return. They will meet with hugs as did the prodigal son, when his father had compassion and ran to his son, kissed him, and said to his servant, "Bring forth the best robe and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: and bring

What

did you do, and how does your father now feel about you? And how do you feel toward your

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hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat and be merry: For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost and is found," (Luke 15:22-24). The mother rejoices because her task has been completed. The mother here is the church, and the intention of this example is as follows: God is, by

nature, love: for "God is love" (John 4:8). Sin causes us to lose this love

he became deprived of God's love when he disobeyed his commandment. Therefore, if you defy God's commandments, you will separate yourself form Him and deprive yourself form His love. Thus, it is sin

that causes us to depart form God's way, but we are not able to live far from God. The Father is God and we are the children, and the mother is the church who directs all her efforts toward strengthening our

love for God, which is in Jesus Christ

rejoices and says, "Repent, for the kingdom of God in a spiritual conference--confession. So

repentance and confession is reconciliation with God.

Listen to What the Saints Say

what

happened to Adam is that

She

is the one that does not cease to call us to repentance. She

The Spiritual Elder says: "Repentance is able to regain the freedom of those who have enslaved their souls to the Devil."

Saint Kiriatos says: "Everyone should confess his sins while he is alive so that he can gain his soul through the advice and help of the priest."

Saint Basilious says: "It is necessary to confess our sins before those who have been granted the secrets of God."

Saint Tertelianous says: "Many have worried more about embarrassment than about salvation and avoid confession to hide their shame or put it off from one day to the next, like one who has an embarrassing disease and refuses to tell his doctor. The result is that he speeds up his own death."

How should I Confess?

The Devil continues with great effort to separate us from the love of God. He roams like a lion searching for someone to devout. For this reason, he makes us fall in despair because of our many sins. My

beloved, be aware that all prophets and apostles,"

(Romans 3:23). "There is none righteous, no not one, "(Romans 3:10), not even David, of whom it was witnessed that his heart was as God wished. "Beloved I was sharpen in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me," (Psalm 51). This is true not only of the disciples and prophets, but even "the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains unto darkness until the judgment of the great day," (Jude 6). The Lord knows the weaknesses of humanity and what the Devil does to us. He does not cease to obstruct our path to eternal life. He tries to deprive us from inheriting the kingdom of heaven. But know that the Lord gave us "power to tread on serpents and

he

sinned and come short of the glory of God,"

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scorpions and over all the power of the enemy," (and the enemy is Satan. Luke 10:19). You have the power to overcome the Devil. This power is from the Lord Jesus, who lives inside you. Be aware that the Lord Jesus, to whom is due all glory, gave us an example of how to conquer the Devil when He was

tempted by him. Lets us see how the Lord prevailed by the power of the written word

happened when the Lord said to the Devil, "Get thee hence, Satan

reminds us in Chapter 4, verse 11 that, "behold, angels came and ministered unto him." The angels will come to you if you resist evil. My beloved, be certain that you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you (Phillippians 4:3). Be assured that you can stay away from sin if you ask for God's help and that you can overcome Satan as Jesus promised us, "Resist the Devil and he will flee from you,"

(James 4:7). Come now, that we may discuss the question we asked previously, "How should I confess?"

see what

"(Matthew

4:10). St. Matthew

The First Step:

A Conference with My Soul St. Agostinos said, "My Lord, grant me to know who

you are and who I am." Before you meet with your confession father, you must sit with yourself and be aware that the price of your soul is the precious blood of Jesus, which he shed upon the cross for your salvation. Have you heard the saying of the Lord, "For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Or what shall man give in exchange for his soul? (Matthew 16:26). There fore, sit with your soul and examine it, that you may know your sins, shortcomings, and faults, and when you have found these, write them down, making certain that you truly regret them. Then, lay them down before you confession father. (this is to guide you toward examining yourself and confessing.). You should examine your soul, not once, but daily, or as often as possible. Then, when you have collected the result of your examination, offer it to your confession father during your confession. You should meet with your confession father every week, every month, at the beginning of a new year or school year, etc. It is preferable that you meet with him daily, but you must meet with your confession father for confession at least once a month under any circumstances.

The Second Step:

A Conference with God After you examine your soul, rise, as the prodigal son did, and

offer yourself to God in fervent prayer and prayer with tears. Speak to Him truthfully and submit to Him your weakness and your guilt. do not cease to ask God to remit your sins and forgive you and send you

help in your efforts. Say to him, "I am weak

son. Remit my sins, for you gave yourself for my sake, and forgive me, for you are the God of mercy and

compassion." Tell him all your pains and weaknesses

passions. You must stand in front of God, the Judge, and promise Him that you have turned from sin and that you are truly repent. say this prayer with Jonah the prophet: "I cried by reason of mine affliction unto the Lord, and he heard me; out of the belly of hell cried I, and thou heardest my voice. For thou hadst

I

have sinned

And

and

I am no longer worthy to be called your

ask Him to help you overcome your

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cast me into the deep, in the midst of the seas; and the floods compassed me about: all thy billows and thy waves passed over me. Then I said, I am cast out of thy sight; yet I will look again toward thy holy temple. The waters compassed me about, even to the soul: the depth closed me round about, the weeds were wrapped about my head. I went down to the bottoms of the mountains; the earth with her bars was about me forever; yet hast thou brought up my life from corruption, O Lord my God. When my soul fainted within me I remembered the Lord: and my prayer came in unto thee, into thine holy temple," (Jonah 2:2-7). Cry with David the prophet, saying, "Have mercy on me O God, according to thy loving kindness: according to the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquities and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me. Against thee, thee only, have I sinned and done this evil in thy sight: That thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest. Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me. Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom. Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice. Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities. Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me," (Psalm 51). Rise and offer your soul to God, revealing your weakness before him, asking for His help, mercy and strength. This is a necessary step for the expression of repentance and the feeling of the pain of sin and the significance of your need for the grace of God and His help, mercy and strength. This is a necessary step for the expression of repentance and the feeling of the pain of sin and the significance of your need for the grace of God and His help, so that you may turn from your sins.

The Third Step:

A Conference (Confession) with the Confession Father Do not

put off your confession, no matter what the circumstances are. For it may be that, even after you have followed these first steps, your desire to confess may decrease and your prayers may diminish, along with your repentance, and you will forget your promise to the Lord, your God. Therefore, you will need to appoint for yourself a speedy meeting with your confession father. Do not let your thoughts deceive you. For some believe that if you simply regret your sins, asking for forgiveness, all things are ended and you are now acceptable to God. This thought contradicts the Bible and the commandments of Christ as he revealed them to us. It is wrong to reject confession after regret and repentance. This sacrament is known as the sacrament of repentance and confession. You are in need of the power that is granted to the church through the priest to absolve you from your sins. You are also in need of God's guidance, which He gives you through the priest who, through experience, can guide you to the right path where you will find Jesus, his commandments, and his grace which will support you in your repentance. If you were alone in a frightening forest, covered in darkness and fear, not knowing what to do or how to escape from that place into safety and peace, how pleased and joyful would you be to find someone who knew all things about this forest, to the pint that you place all your faith in him and rejoice that you found him that he may guide you through a safe path! In this case, you will follow all his instructions and ideas with confidence. Therefore, it is necessary that there be someone beside you to guide and help you

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through the way to eternal life and that you put all your trust in him. This person is your confession father. Thus, the confession finalizes this sacrament. Through it, you obtain forgiveness and guidance.

Here is some advice to help you benefit from confession

1. When you sit before your confession father, remember that you are in the presence of God feel that you are in front of God's delegate, who is responsible for all His sacraments, and that God hears all of your emotions.

2. Do not be ashamed to reveal all of your sins, regardless of what they are, and do not try to hide, simplify, or color even your worst sins. Rather, feel the bitterness of sin, and reveal it as it is and how you felt while committing it.

3. Have confidence in your confession father and do not hesitate to be open and reveal all that is on your mind. For sin is not only an action or word; even a sinful thought can defile your heart.

Therefore, the lust of the heart is equal to the action itself, and senseless anger is equal to murder. This is the law of the Holy Bible. Because of this, it is important to reveal all of your sins, whether they be in deed or in word or in thought or in any feeling, and be assured that your confession father is entrusted by God with everything that you say.

4. Know in your heart that the purpose of confession is not simply to reveal your sins, but to try with great effort to analyze with the priest how you may avoid these sins in the future, grow in your spiritual life., benefit from the experience of your confession father, and remedy your weakness. This is a very important matter.

5. Hence, be receptive to his advice and follow it faithfully; even if you are not fully convinced of it, follow it for the sake of obedience. Be certain that God guided him to it for your spiritual benefit and for your salvation. There is an interesting story about this: Once in confession, I advised a boy to rise early in the morning and exercise before beginning to pray. I was later surprised in a general meeting with one of the bishops when this boy asked "Should I carry out all the advice of the confession father, even if it is unrealistic? My confession father advised me to exercise in the morning, even though I was asking him for spiritual exercise. Has the priest now become a physical education instructor?" This was the end of the question. Of course, no matter what the answer was, it does not reflect the feeling of the confession father toward his son. The confessor complained that he was unable to wake up early and that even if he did, he could not get out of bed (because he was overweight). From this, I noticed that he had a lack of energy. The Holy Bible advises that physical exercise is beneficial to a certain group of people. I felt that he was among this group. It is my belief that exercise in the morning gives energy throughout the day, as it is commonly accepted. Hence, the spirit moved me to advise him to do these exercises, which suited him. But because he did not have full confidence that the advice of his confession father

was for his salvation, he hesitated to carry it out

Do

not be part of this group.

6. Be very honest with your confession father if his advice is of no benefit to you, so that he may try

next time to give you different advice. Do not hasten to change your confession father for this reason. What happened with him will happen again because of you, if you do not tell him that his

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advice is not helping you.

7.

Do not waste your confession time speaking about others and their faults in order to make yourself and your sin seem innocent. Rather, blame no one but yourself and instead of complaining to the priest about the actions of your brother at home, or your father and mother or relative, recall you own sins toward them, regardless of whether their actions may have caused you to sin, lest you be a judge of others, even in your confession.

8.

Do not be discouraged and say to yourself, "I have confessed often, yet there is no hope that I may change or abstain from sin." Be assured that the time will come when you will become a perfect person of God. This will come with patience; the Lord says, "In your patience, possess ye your soul," (Luke 21:19). All that is required of you is that you make an effort; the more you try, the more grace you will receive. We receive grace by the abundance of our efforts, and as much as you try, you will receive grace.

9.

If you have time before confession (while waiting for your turn), do not waste it speaking to others; be prepared always with a spiritual book to read until it is your turn, so that you may be ready to confess by being aware of your sins and feeling regret for them.

10.

Keep a small notebook to write down the date of your confession , the advice you received from your confession father, his comments and the activities he gave you so that you do not forget them. This will also enable you to keep track of yourself by yourself and avoid being late for your next confession.

11.

Lastly, after you confess, be firm with yourself in your spiritual life, having strong willpower regarding the fulfillment of your spiritual obligations, hallowing the time of holy communion and the Lord's day in its entirety. Overcome all the passions that separate you from God. Use prayer and fasting and the word of God as weapons to your defense. Do not forget that you have begun, so do not look back, "For no man having put his hand to the plow and looking back is fit for kingdom of God," (Luke 9:62).

12.

Know that you confess in preparation for holy communion, so do not put off confession.

An appendix to guide you in examining yourself before confession:­

First, Repentance and Confession:

Do you have a confession father?

When did you begin with him?

Are you faithful in going to confession at least once a month?

What are the obstacles that keep you from confessing, and have you tried to overcome them?

Do you rejoice at the meeting of your confession, father and try intentionally to meet him?

Are you honest with him in all things?

Do you account for yourself before confession?

Do you honestly try to carry out the advice of your confession father?

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Do you feel that you have repented or are you still unsure?

Do you desire the life of holiness and work toward it?

Secondly, Basic Worship

Do you pray? How often?

Do you set aside time for prayer, or does it depend on the situation?

Have you tried to overcome these situations that interfere with prayer?

How do you pray? Do you like to pray the Agpeya?

Do you kneel when you pray?

Do you say other prayers before and after meals, before studying, before work, etc.?

Have you used prayer to overcome sin, fear, and problems? In other words, do you feel that prayer is strength or blessing or is it just a habit?

Do you have other personal prayers (for service-for sickness-for the church-for your house and family, etc.)?

Have you tried to pray with the family? Why?

Do you like to fast? Are you faithful in fasting every Wednesday and Friday?

Do you honor fasting and start at the beginning?

What are the obstacles that prevent you from fasting? Have you tried to overcome them?

Do you fast alone or with your family?

Do you fast without any food for a certain numbers of hours during the day?

Do you feel that you are fulfilling a purpose by fasting?

Have you tried to gain good qualities through fasting (fasting from words, sin, judgment of others. Do you fast for other, personal reasons?)

Do you give God your tithe?

Do you feel pleasure from giving?

Have you tried to give from your need and personal belongings?

Are you stingy with your family and yourself?

Do you speak to others about your gifts and your promises to God?

The Divine Liturgy

Do you prepare for the Divine Liturgy?

Do you attend it regularly?

Do you make time to attend church or does your attendance depend on whether or not you have time?

Do you attend with the intention of taking communion every time?

Do you take part in the service?

Do you focus you attention on the prayer of the Liturgy or does your mind wander?

Do you leave church and then go to places which separate you from God (bad friends, cinema, television) or do you sanctify the whole day?

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Do you honor the church and feel that God is present there?

Do you have certain meetings in the church and do you attend them regularly and rejoice when the meeting time draws near, regardless of the circumstances?

Have you tried to take part in the service of God?

3. Thirdly, Your Spiritual Behavior

Do you behave toward others in a way that is appropriate for Christians or do you behave as society would have you?

Do you try to act like others in society, or are you firm with yourself?

Are you honest in your duties? (your studies as a student, you work as an employee? your career? your other responsibilities)?

Are you consider the rule of the house easy or difficult to follow? Are you compliant and obedient to them or not?

Who are your friends? Do you feel that they bring you closer to God?

Do you have habits that are appropriate for God's children to have, or not (smoking, gambling, frequenting night clubs, addictions, habits annoying to others)?

Do you often trick people and hide your true intentions from them?

Do you try to show off?

Do you allow yourself to do things that you forbid others to do and take that which is not yours?

Do you like the praise of others and try to obtain it?

What is the subject of your conversation in any group?

Are your gathering all silliness, making fun of others?

Are your conversations about worldly or spiritual matters that give praise to the Lord Jesus?

Is your eye single, your thoughts and heart simple, or do you behave arrogantly?

Do you read the Bible regularly? How do you read it?

Do you try to memorize verses and write them down or do you read simply because of habit?

Do you read to gain understanding (or just for the sake of reading) and choose a verse to be the focus of the day?

Do you feel that you need to know the Holy Bible? Is it your pleasure to live by its commandments?

Do you feel that it is the voice of God?

Do you like to read spiritual books and try to buy them, giving them precedence over your personal needs?

Do you set aside time to read them or does this depend on the circumstances?

Have you tried to compile a spiritual library?

Sins of the Flesh

Bad habits, youthful habits, adultery, hatred for others, revenge, disobedience, fighting, disputes / arguments, arrogance, envy, smoking, alcohol addiction.

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Sins of the Tongue

Judging others, lies, cursing, swearing, gossip, blasphemy, bearing false witness, unnecessary disputes, using language inappropriate to God's children.

Sins of sight and other senses

Lust, defiling thoughts of evil and adultery, hatred, selfishness, worldly thoughts, vain glory, doubt, arrogance, judging others.

Questions for Parents

Do you feel that you love your wife?

Do you feel sure that God brought you together, for "What God hath joined together, let not man put asunder," (Matthew 19:6) or do you feel you deserved a better wife?

This same question applies to the wife: Do you love your husband and serve him obediently as our mother Sarah?

Are you always forgiving to the mistakes of your wife? or do you take from them a justification to be cruel, firm, and treat her with contempt?

Do you respect and love your wife's family?

And to the wife, do you love your husband's family and rejoice at their presence?

Do you love your children and do you like to sit with them and spend time with them and show them your love? Is it your hope to offer them as saints to God or is your only concern to educate them?

Have you thought (mother or father) to discipline them for their lack of prayer and attendance of church?

Do you ask them daily about their spiritual conduct as much as about their schoolwork?

Do you argue with your wife in front of your children and offend them? or do you try to be a good model for them?

Do you try always make peace in the house and with your neighbors?

Do you feel that there is love in the house, or does division overcome this?

What is your role in this situation?

Do you bring unity to the house or inflame it?

Have you tried to honor the morning and evening prayers together with the members of your family?

Do you honor the Lord's day and encourage attendance at church and communion?

Do you gather your children around you daily and read to them the Holy Bible?

Do you support bad habits in front of your children (smoking, drinking, gambling)?

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Is you r marital life revealed before your children?

Do you take part in the chores of the house and the needs of your children and make them feel that you sacrifice for them?

Questions for Children

Do you love your parents with all your heart?

Do you honor your parents according to God's commandments?

Is the extent of your obedience to your parents due to love or to fear?

Do you try to help with the chores of the house?

Do you make every effort to gain their acceptance?

Do you feel responsibility toward your studies and, success and toward your brothers and sisters?

Do you love your brothers and sisters and favor them over yourself and try to help them in all honesty?

Are you only concerned with your demands regardless of the circumstances of the household?

Do you play a role in maintaining peace in the house or the opposite? Are you pleased with this?

Do you feel that you are the greatest among your brothers and sisters and always favor yourself over them?

Do you feel jealous of you brothers and sisters and like to be first in everything and have all your wishes fulfilled?

Conclusion

My Beloved sons and daughters:- This book is NOT intended to be a lecture on the Sacrament of confession; but only a genuine invitation to practice this Holy Sacrament, and to experience how wonderful life could be with our Lord Jesus Christ.

Jesus Christ Loves you

physician; but they that are sick. I came not to call the righteous but sinners to repentance (Luke

5:31,32).

whatever

may be your sins. For He said, "they that are whole need not a

Open your heart to Jesus loves you

be

Honest and Truthful with yourself and have faith of how much God

This is the chance to dispose of your sins! Here on earth while we are still in flesh; because in the eternal life there is no repentance, confession or redemption but judgment (John 5:24-30). The church is

praying for you

and

asking our Lord on your behalf to accept your repentance and confession.

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Come To Me

By Father Takla Azmy