Labor for Virtue

by Scott D. Hendricks

35. Abba Anthony said, ‘Whoever hammers a lump of iron, first decides what he is going to make of it, a scythe, a sword, or an axe. Even so we ought to make up our minds what kind of virtue we want to forge or we labour in vain.’

~ from The Sayings of the Desert Fathers

Benedicta Ward, trans., The Sayings of the Desert Fathers: the alphabetical collection (Kalamazoo: Cistercian Publications, 1975), 8.