Become a merchant of the kingdom of God
Once more Paphnutius prayed to the Lord to show him someone like himself. And again a voice from heaven replied: "You are like a certain merchant whom you will see approaching. Get up quickly and run to meet him. He is a man who I judge to be like you." Paphnutius went out without delay and went to meet this merchant from Alexandria, who was coming back from the Thebaid with three ships and a profit of twenty thousand solidi. And because he was a religious man always trying to do good works he had loaded his sons up with three bags of vegetables to take to the monastery of the man of God. Hence his meeting with Paphnutius, who as soon as he came into view cried out: "What is that you have done, that you are most precious and worthy in the sight of God? What sort of work have you been doing on earth such that your lot and fellowship has risen into the realms of heaven? Relinquish all these things into the hands of those who are of the earth and whose thoughts are earthy, and become a merchant of the kingdom of God to which you are called. Follow the Saviour, to whose presence in a short while you must be taken up." And without any hesitation he instructed his sons to disburse any superfluous profits to the poor, even though he had already distributed a great deal himself. But he followed the holy Paphnutius to the desert, where he was installed in the same place as those who had earlier been taken to the Lord. He was instructed in the same way, and persevered in spiritual exercises, and in the study of divine wisdom. After a short while he too was taken up into the congregation of the righteous.