"The unfaithful soul, which does not expect to receive the Lord's reward, will find no consolation. So it simply sits and decays in its own thoughts, dwelling on whatever small matter occurs:
'He said this to me.' Or: 'I will say this to him.'
That person...imagines impossible matters which he very often cannot bring to fruition" -- Abba Zosimas in "Reflections"
A few observations:
* The phrase "decays in its own thoughts" is brilliant. It captures one of the most ferocious tendencies of those who tend toward the introverted life.
* I don't know how many times I've had imaginary (or what I believe will be preemptive) discussions in my head with various people where I try and map out all the possible "roads" the discussion may take. What a stupendous waste of time. In real life people never follow the script I have for them!
* I just finished St. John of Krondstadt's "Counsels on the Christian Priesthood" and I've been amazed at his incredible boldness before God. When he prays there is a sense in which he almost "demands" of God for that which he asks. It connects well with Abba Zosimas.
In Abba Zosimas we see an unfaithful soul is precisely one who does not expect to receive the Lord's reward--namely, Christ Himself. As we enter into Holy Week, let us expect to suffer with Christ so that we may expect to worship and glorify His Holy Resurrection.