The spiritual tools of prayer, fasting, and alms-giving are connected; they flow into one another. And all three have one goal, have one purpose, have one thing that they are supposed to do in our life. All the tools that the Church gives us exist to make us more like Christ.
This summer I had the privilege of serving two Orthodox youth camps, one in Idaho, USA and the other in Alberta, Canada. The spiritual theme of both camps was the same: “What’s in Your Toolbox?” The idea was to talk to the youth about the tools the Orthodox Church provides to help them grow spiritually and morally.
On the first day of the first camp, I asked the group—there were about fifty, fifteen to seventeen year olds—if anyone…