God Always Gives Gifts and Blessings
- When you turn to attend to God, begin by noting how God gazes on you all the time, how tenderly and powerfully He regards you.
- Pray for a real desire for the grace you are praying for.
- As you come to the end of the prayer time, try to make sure that your prayer turns into a dialog with God. You might talk with your Creator, or with Jesus.
Notes about Prayer:
- It is important to speak out our desire for God’s GRACE according to the subject matter for prayer and our own dispositions during the retreat. It is something that we do not have that we really want and that only God can give. To pray for a grace is first of all to acknowledge that growth in prayer is God’s gift and not our work. It puts us in the position of receiver rather than that of the doer, and it gives us a focus in the prayer. Expressing what we truly want from God may also act as a preparation of our inner being for an openness to God’s entrance into a particular area of our life. The graces that St. Ignatius bids us ask for are all affective graces, things to be felt and experienced. In each prayer we are to persist in begging God for these gifts. If you don’t seem to be receiving the grace you are seeking talk it over with the Lord in your colloquies.
- COLLOQUY is a conversation which St. Ignatius suggests at the end of every prayer exercise; but it is also for any point in the exercise as one feels moved to. It is made as a friend with a friend; in it one talks over what is going on in his experience.
Ref.: Choosing Christ in the World
Orientations, Vol. II
To Seek and To Find The Will of God
Draw Me Into Your Friendship
Theme: God is Always Giving Gifts
Grace: A heart-felt gratitude for the various gifts that I have received from God.
- Psalm 103 – God pours out kindness. Human life ends quickly.
- Psalm 8 – What is man that you should be mindful of him?
- Ezekiel 11:17-21 – I will give them a new heart.
- Luke 12:22-31 – I am not to worry. My Father knows all my need.
- Romans 8:29-34 – He will give us everything else along with his Son
- Ephesians 1:3-14 – God gives grace and Christlife
- 1 Corinthians 4:7 – Name something that you have not received.
Points to Ponder:
“A Litany of Praise and Thanksgiving.” Look back at your life and recall the different gifts God has given you—
►family ►friends ►faith ►even failings
►places ►potentials ►power ►possessions
►traits ►talents ►trials ►etc.
As you name and identify all these gifts, celebrate in your heart with praise and thanksgiving saying, “I praise and thank you, Lord.” (Ex. “for the gift of my father and mother, I praise and thank you, Lord.)
What stood out in your memory? What feelings surfaced as you recalled all these gifts from your loving God? What could be God’s personal note to you in all these?
Colloquy: Speak to the Lord from the heart about all these gifts, and when you are ready, offer all these back to the Lord with thanksgiving in your heart. Then, let the Lord speak to you in the silence of your heart. End with Our Father.
I asked God for strength, that I might achieve.
I was made weak,
That I might learn humbly to obey.
I asked for health, that I might do greater things.
I was given infirmity,
That I might do better things.
I asked for riches, that I might be happy.
I was given poverty,
That I might be wise.
I asked for power, that I might have the praise of men.
I was given weakness,
that I might feel the need of God.
I asked God for all things, that I might enjoy life.
I was given life,
That I might enjoy all things.
I got nothing that I asked for
–but everything I hoped for.
Almost despite myself,
My unspoken prayers were answered.
I am among all men,
Most richly blessed.
– by Henry Viscardi