BUT God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.
WHEN your heart inclines to evil, and the evil one begins to undermine your heart, so that it is completely removed from the rock of faith, then say to yourself inwardly:
“I know of my spiritual poverty, my own nothingness without faith. I am so weak, that it is only by Christ’s name that I live and obtain peace, that I rejoice and my heart expands, whilst without Him I am spiritually dead, I am troubled, and my heart is oppressed; without the Lord’s Cross I should have been long since the victim of the most cruel distress and despair.
“Only Christ keeps me alive: and the Cross is my peace and my consolation.”
St John of Kronstadt, “My Life in Christ, or, Moments of Spiritual Serenity and Contemplation &c.” (CCEL).
THE Cross, cause of all blessings, is seen and worshipped; and all creation keeps festival with joy, enlightened by the grace of our God who was willingly lifted up on it.
Made radiant with the light of the splendours of the Cross and having put all our trust in it, let us flee the darkness of sins and let us cry, ‘O enlightenment of all things, compassionate Lord, glory to you!’
We sing your praise, O Cross, and we embrace you with faith as we beg your mighty power, ‘Rescue us from the snares of the foe, and pilot us all to the haven of salvation as we sing your praise’.
Canon of the Cross, by Joseph the Hymnographer (810-886). Translation from Anastasis.