Sts. Joachim and Anna the Ancestors of God, holding the All-pure Theotokos
Elder Eliseus (Elisha) of Simonopetra on Sacrifice in Marriage and Monasticism
Therefore, don't think that you don't aren't praying. You pray daily, if for the sole reason that you have decided to offer yourselves to God, and to live apart, against the worldly mindset. Thus you should know that this constitutes prayer. This is prayer. Prayer is when I become a monk, to offer myself to God. This is prayer.
You pray when you offer yourself to the church and as a sacrifice towards each other within marriage. One who gets married, therefore, in his married life, is a prototype. Marriage is a return to the former state in Paradise, in other words. It is to offer yourself in the married life, for what does it do? To offer myself to someone else is to sacrifice myself for the other.
No one can distinguish the lay person from the monk, for what are they? Being a monk is a return to a former state, in other words, that of Paradise, without compromises.
We sell our freedom to God, because God is our freedom.
Through the prayers of our Holy Fathers, Lord Jesus Christ our God, have mercy on us and save us! Amen!