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A certain disciple of one of the holy seniors was having a battle with carnal thoughts but by the grace of God he was able to resist evil and unclean thoughts by means of fasts and prayers, and vigorous manual work. When his holy senior saw his labours he said to him, “If you like, my son, I will pray to the Lord to take this battle away from you.”
“I find, father,” he replied, ” that as I undergo these labours I feel them bringing forth good fruit in me, for as a result of this battle I fast more and undertake more vigils and prayers. So please pray to the Lord to have mercy on me and give me strength that I may endure and strive with integrity.”
“Now I know that you really do understand how through your patience this spiritual battle will help you towards the eternal salvation of your soul,” the holy old man then said to him. “As the holy Apostle says, ‘I have fought the fight, I have run the course, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is a crown of righteousness prepared for me, and not only for me but for all those who look for his coming.'” (
2 Timothy 4.7).

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