A certain Abba became very seriously ill and he lost much blood. One of the brethren had some dried prunes, and because of the severe illness of Abba, he cooked a little food and put the prunes in it, and brought it to him and entreated him saying, "Father do me an act of grace and take a little of this stew, for perhaps it will do you good." Abba lifted up his eyes and looked at him and said, "In what part of the Scriptures have you found this thing? Truly I have wished that God would leave me in this illness for the last thirty years, for when I am weak, then am I strong"; and the Abba although he was grievously sick, would not take even a little of the food, and when the brother saw this he took it and went back to his cell.
graphic: a monk at prayer