St. Isaac the Syrian. "Ascetic Words." Word 55.
One of the saints wrote: "If one does not consider himself a sinner, his prayer is not accepted by the Lord." If you say that some fathers wrote, what is purity of heart, what is health, what is dispassion, what is contemplation, they wrote not in order to make us strive for that ahead of time; for it is written that the kingdom of God cometh not with observation (Lk.17: 20) of expectation. And those who had such intention, they obtained pride and fall. And we will arrange the region of the heart by repentance and life pleasing to God; what is given by the Lord comes by itself, if the place in the heart is pure and undefiled. What we are looking for with observation, I mean high Divine gifts, is not approved by the Church of God; and those who accepted that, they obtained pride and fall. And this is not a sign that a person loves God, but mental illness. And how can we strive for high Divine gifts, when Paul glories in tribulations and considers the fellowship of the sufferings of Christ to be a high God's gift.