On Prayer as Warfare

Abba Agathon ca. 4th cent.

In my opinion, no other labor is as difficult as prayer to God. Every time a person wants to pray, our spiritual enemies want to come and disrupt it, for they know that it is only by deflecting humans from prayer that they can do them any harm. Whatever good work a person undertakes will produce success, it if is done with perserverance; but the labor [of prayer] is a warfare that will endure until our very last breath. (The Sayings of the Desert Fathers: Agathon, 9)