The roof of any house stands upon the foundations and the rest of the structure. The foundations themselves are laid in order to carry the roof. This is both useful and necessary, for the roof cannot stand without the foundations and the foundations are absolutely useless without the roof – no help to any living creature. In the same way the grace of God is preserved by the practice of the commandments, and the observance of these commandments is laid down like foundations through the gift of God. The grace of the Spirit cannot remain with us without the practice of the commandments, but the practice of the commandments is of no help or advantage to us without the grace of God.
St. Symeon the New Theologian, with thanks to Balamand Monastery
Truly we live by grace, and it is only by grace that we survive at all in our Lord’s calling. Even for the surrender without which we cannot receive grace, we depend upon grace, and upon the prayers of the saints.