One day Saint John fell into a pit. He was a God-fearing and meek monk, so he humbly remained sitting in the pit. On the third day, John began to doubt whether, out of cowardice, he had not accepted the test of the Lord for His will. Should he sit at the bottom of the pit in his filth or crawl out into the light of God?

John prayed to the Lord and at the same moment the Lord sent a sign to John — a spruce branch hung into the pit. John grabbed a branch and climbed out of the hole. Having got out, he wept bitterly, realizing that he had succumbed to the demonic temptation in the charm and pride.

John jumped into the pit horrified, and began to pray to the Lord for forgiveness. The Lord forgave John and rewarded him with many spiritual gifts.

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