St Anthony compares those who follow evil spirits to those who follow Christ. Those who follow the evil spirits show “tumult and confusion of thought, defection, hatred towards them who live a life of discipline, indifference, grief, fear of death, and disregard virtue.” But those who follow Christ have “joy unspeakable, cheerfulness, courage, renewed strength, calmness of thought, and boldness and love toward God.” […]
One day St Anthony went into church as this Gospel verse was being read:
Jesus said, “If you wish to be perfect, go, sell your possessions, and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.”
Anthony perceived that this verse was directed at him, so he IMMEDIATELY gave the family land, his inheritance, and his other possessions to the poor, leaving some money for his younger sister.
Anthony was able to do this because his parents had departed. His younger sister was put in a convent to be raised, and we can surmise the convent was where she wanted to go, because if this was not the best place for her Anthony would have taken another path. No degree on saintliness on his part would have been worth the price of her unhappiness and her soul.
Immediately is a word you see quite often in the first Gospel of Mark. When should you repent and live a godly life? When should you start caring for your neighbor? When should you follow the way of the Lord? IMMEDIATELY. […]