Thinking gloomily of the sins and shortcomings of others, it suddenly came to me to remember my own offenses, just as heinous as those of others. If I concern myself with my own sins and lament them, if I remember my own failures and lapses, I will not be resentful of others. This was most cheering and lifted the load of gloom from my mind. It makes people unhappy to judge people and happy to love them.
This prompted me to recall this beautiful prayer from the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, which the people say just prior to receiving Holy Communion:
O Lord, I believe and profess that You are truly Christ, the Son of the living God, Who came into the World to save sinners, of whom I am the first. Accept me as a partaker of your mystical supper, O Son of God, for I will not reveal Your mysteries to our enemies, nor will I give you a kiss as did Judas, but like the thief will I confess to You.
This, in turn, prompted me to make an addition to the blog's side menu that I've been meaning to make for a while now, which also has its origins in the Eastern Church — the eminently pithy Jesus Prayer:
Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.
[HT for the Jesus Prayer picture: crazyacres]