St John Chrysostom
[HOMILY III., MATT. I. 1]
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"A man cannot correct himself all of a sudden, but it is like pulling a barge - pull, pull, and let go, let go! Not all at once, but little by little. Do you know the mast on a ship? There is a pole to which is tied all of the ship's lines. If you pull on it then everything gradually pulls. But if you take it all at once, you will ruin everything."
St. Ambrose of Optina
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"...he who has received a gift from God, and is ungrateful for it, is already on the way to losing it..."
St. Peter of Damaskos
(Book 1: A Treasury of Divine Knowledge, The Philokalia Vol. 3 pg. 187)