ethiopian orthodox cross

“It is never so difficult to say from the heart, ‘Thy Will be done, Father,’ as when we are in sore affliction or grievous sickness, and especially when we are subjected to the injustice of men, or the assaults and wiles of the enemy. It is also difficult to say from the heart ‘Thy Will be done’ when we ourselves were the cause of some misfortune, for then we think that it is not God’s Will, but our own will, that has placed us in such a position, although nothing can happen without the Will of God. In general, it is difficult to sincerely believe that it is the Will of God that we should suffer, when the heart knows both by faith and experience that God is our blessedness; and therefore it is difficult to say in misfortune, ‘Thy Will be done.’ We think, ‘Is it possible that this is the Will of God? Why does God torment us? Why are others quiet and happy? What have we done? Will there be an end to our torments?’ And so on.

But when it is difficult for our corrupt nature to acknowledge the Will of God over us, that Will of God without which nothing happens, and to humbly submit to it, then is the very time for us to humbly submit to this Will, and to offer to the Lord our most precious sacrifice—that is, heartfelt devotion to Him, not only in the time of ease and happiness, but also in suffering and misfortune; it is then that we must submit our vain erring wisdom to the perfect Wisdom of God, for our thoughts are as far from the thoughts of God as the heavens are higher than the earth… ‘Thy will be done.’

For instance, when you wish and by every means endeavor to be well and healthy, and yet remain ill, then say : ‘Thy will be done.’ When you undertake something and your undertaking does not succeed, say: ‘Thy will be done.’ When you do good to others, and they repay you by evil, say: ‘Thy will be done.’ Or when you would like to sleep and are overtaken by sleeplessness, say: ‘Thy will be done.’ In general, do not become irritated when anything is not done in accordance with your will, but learn to submit in everything to the Will of the Heavenly Father. You would like not to experience any temptations, and yet the enemy daily harasses you by them; provokes and annoys you by every means.
Do not become irritated and angered, but say: ‘Thy will be done’.”

~St. John of Kronstadt

(Photo of Ethiopian Orthodox Meskel Festival, via reuters.com)

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The Swastika is NOT a nazi symbol

This ancient symbol has appeared in numerous civilisations over 1000’s of years and was (and despite all - still is) generally viewed as representing good fortune: “It originally represented the revolving sun, fire, or life. The word swastika is derived from the Sanskrit swastika which means, "conducive to well- being”“.

From top:

1) Peoples Republic of Mongolia banknote 1 Dollar (Togrog) of 1924

2) (left) The Chilocco Indian Agricultural School basketball team in 1909. (right) An old Ethiopian Orthodox Church cross

3) A vintage 1920’s Californian fruit sellers label

4) (left) A 1925 Coca-Cola promotional pendant or medal for the Japanese market. (right) An Indian wall decoration of the Hindu deity, Ganesh, revered as the remover of life’s obstacles and a patron of the arts and sciences

5) A Roman mosaic at La Olmeda, Spain

6) (left) An enthroned Tibetan Lama, photo c.1900. (right) Clara Bow, the 1920s star of silent films. 

7) A panel from a Pre-Columbian codex, Mexico.