“Discernment in beginners is true knowledge of themselves; in intermediate souls it is a spiritual sense that faultlessly distinguishes what is truly good from what is of nature and opposed to it; and in the perfect it is the knowledge which they possess by divine illumination, and which can enlighten with its lamp what is dark in others. Or perhaps, generally speaking, discernment is, and is recognized as, the assured understanding of the divine will on all occasions, in every place and in all matters; and it is only found in those who are pure in heart, and in body and in mouth.” -St. John Climacus (Ladder of Divine Ascent)
To discern is to understand what is good and what is evil. St. Paul teaches that those of spiritual maturity should be able to “have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.” (Heb 5:13) Take some time this week to separate the good from the evil in your life. What are the good things in your life you can cultivate? What are the evil things in your life that you need to prune back? Lent is the perfect season to tend to your spiritual garden.
This Week’s Sermonettes by Clergy
“What is Jesus Calling Me to Do?”
Father Basil Hickman – St. George Greek Orthodox Church (Des Moines, Iowa)
“Discernment Within St. John’s Ladder”
Fr. Thomas Alatzakis – St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church (Libertyville, Illinois)