John obeyed in all things with the simplicity of a child.
After a careful training of sixteen years he withdrew to the top of a steep cliff to think only of God and his soul. The more he knew of himself, the more he distrusted himself. For the last fifty years, therefore, he never saw women, and seldom men. The result of this vigilance and purity was threefold: a holy joy and cheerfulness which consoled all who conversed with him; perfect obedience to superiors; and, in return for this, authority over creatures, whom he had forsaken for the Creator. St. Augustine tells us of his appearing in a vision to a holy woman, whose sight he had restored, to avoid seeing her face to face. Devils assailed him continually, but John never ceased his prayer.
From his long communing with God, he turned to men with gifts of healing and prophecy. Twice each week he spoke through a window with those who came to him, blessing oil for their sick and predicting things to come. A deacon came to him in disguise, and he reverently kissed his hand. To the Emperor Theodosius he foretold his future victories and the time of his death. The three last days of his life John gave wholly to God: on the third he was found on his knees as if in prayer, bud his soul was with the blessed. He died in 394.
Feast Day of Saint John of Egypt