Monday, March 03, 2014

Fr. Thomas Hopko's 55 Maxims ~ A Gem of a List from 2007

This list is from Fr. David W.'s blog and he posted it in 2007.
by Fr. Thomas Hopko was very helpful to me then and is still helpful now.
This list on the Christian life continues to ring true for me
and it is humbling to realize, now in 2014, 
how much of it I did not even understand.
Now I understand some more, but sadly only from realizing my failings 
in doing much of what is written here.
That said, it is a really life giving list on the Christian life.
Sometimes we get really bogged down on how to be a Christian 
and what it looks like.
I leave you with the list as a beautiful life-giving understanding 
of what the Christian life can look like.
This list in itself I believe is a wonderful
Lenten Meditation. 


55 Maxims from Fr. Thomas Hopko

  1. Be always with Christ and trust God in everything
  2. Pray as you can, not as you think you must
  3. Have a keepable rule of prayer done by discipline
  4. Say the Lord’s Prayer several times each day
  5. Repeat a short prayer when your mind is not occupied
  6. Make some prostrations when you pray
  7. Eat good foods in moderation and fast on fasting days
  8. Practice silence, inner and outer
  9. Sit in silence 20 to 30 minutes each day
  10. Do acts of mercy in secret
  11. Go to liturgical services regularly
  12. Go to confession and holy communion regularly
  13. Do not engage intrusive thoughts and feelings
  14. Reveal all your thoughts and feelings to a trusted person regularly
  15. Read the scriptures regularly
  16. Read good books, a little at a time
  17. Cultivate communion with the saints
  18. Be an ordinary person, one of the human race
  19. Be polite with everyone, first of all family members
  20. Maintain cleanliness and order in your home
  21. Have a healthy, wholesome hobby
  22. Exercise regularly
  23. Live a day, even a part of a day, at a time
  24. Be totally honest, first of all with yourself
  25. Be faithful in little things
  26. Do your work, then forget it
  27. Do the most difficult and painful things first
  28. Face reality
  29. Be grateful
  30. Be cheerful
  31. Be simple, hidden, quiet and small
  32. Never bring attention to yourself
  33. Listen when people talk to you
  34. Be awake and attentive, fully present where you are
  35. Think and talk about things no more than necessary
  36. Speak simply, clearly, firmly, directly
  37. Flee imagination, fantasy, analysis, figuring things out
  38. Flee carnal, sexual things at their first appearance
  39. Don’t complain, grumble, murmur or whine
  40. Don’t seek or expect pity or praise
  41. Don’t compare yourself with anyone
  42. Don’t judge anyone for anything
  43. Don’t try to convince anyone of anything
  44. Don’t defend or justify yourself
  45. Be defined and bound by God, not people
  46. Accept criticism gracefully and test it carefully
  47. Give advice only when asked or when it is your duty
  48. Do nothing for people that they can and should do for themselves
  49. Have a daily schedule of activities, avoiding whim and caprice
  50. Be merciful with yourself and others
  51. Have no expectations except to be fiercely tempted to your last breath
  52. Focus exclusively on God and light, and never on darkness, temptation and sin
  53. Endure the trial of yourself and your faults serenely, under God’s mercy
  54. When you fall, get up immediately and start over
  55. Get help when you need it, without fear or shame
Podcast transcript that this list is from is found here, with the podcast itself.


TeresaAngelina said...

Good to see this again. I think there should be a #56 - "When tempted to beat anyone over the head with this list; refer to #1 through 55". May the Lord have mercy upon us all.

elizabeth said...

T-A: good to see YOU again! I had once tried to email you but my email addresses for you were all sent back...
Feel free to email me! :)

God bless you this lent! and YES, may the Lord have mercy on us!!

TeresaAngelina said...

Thank you! I will need your email address though - technology is less a mystery than it once was for me but not by much. :)

elizabeth said...

T-A: if you can write my blog email

roosjeblog AT yahoo DOT CA

that would be easiest :)

yes, many mysteries in technology for sure!! :)