When We Could Bear It No Longer
GOD PERMITS HARDSHIP. Chrysostom:
"Therefore when we could bear it no longer, we were willing to be left at Athens alone. And Paul sent two of those who ministered to him," both to announce his coming and to make them more eager....Do you see how God permits trials, and by them stirs up and awakens the disciples and makes them more energetic? Then let us not sink down under trials: for he himself will "also make the way of escape, that we may be able to bear them." Nothing so makes friends and rivets them so firmly as affliction; nothing so fastens and joins the souls of believers; nothing is so timely for us teachers in order that the things said by us may be heard. For when the hearer is living an easy life, listless and indolent, those who try to teach him only annoy him. But when he is in affliction and distress, he longs to hear his teachers. For when he is distressed in his soul, he seeks comfort from all directions in his affliction. And the preaching brings no small comfort.
Homilies on the Acts of the Apostles 42. (NPNF 1 13:335)
Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture