Retreat in Daily Life: Prayer 5

God and I Co-creating My Self in My World

Reminders:

  1. The Spiritual Exercises are effective because they awaken us to what is already present in the depths of our being present not by nature but by grace. That is why the praying of the grace is very important and should never be missed.
  2. When the awareness of God’s presence is apprehended, not so much by thought or reflection, but more by love, then, one is said to be in contemplation.

 

Notes about Prayer:

  1. For St. Ignatius, important religious experiences are first of all feeling (sentir is the Spanish word for this). Feeling refers to movements at the center of our being (at the deeper or subconscious level). It also a felt-knowing that comes from the heart. In discernment we should pay attention to the deep responses of the heart.
  2. Consolations and Desolations

-Consolations are trends of feeling which tend to move one into closer union with God. It is the normal condition of a person united to God.

-Desolations are trends of feeling which tend to move one away from union with God. These are normal disturbances of Christian peace and joy.

  1. St. Ignatius says these things about consolation:

-It is temporary. It will not last forever but disappear after a while and be replaced by other states. The pray-er, then, should make use of it to prepare for times of desolation.

-It is a grace which one cannot claim as a right or take credit for as earned or achieved. Nor does it make one better than anyone else. It follows that the pray-er should make frequent acts of humility in times of consolation.

Theme: God and I Co-creating My Self in My World

Grace: My Lord Jesus, I beg for the grace of a deep awareness and appreciation of how You and I co-create my own self.

Scripture Passages:

  1. Psalm 135 – Whatever the Lord wishes he does in heaven and on earth.
  2. Deuteronomy 8:1-6 – God is training you.
  3. Jeremiah 18:1-6 – Like clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in my hand.
  4. Mark 12:28-34 – The greatest commandment.
  5. Ephesians 2:1-10 – God brought us to life with Christ
  6. Revelation 21:1-7 – “Behold, I make all things new.”
  7. Repetition of the week

Points to Ponder:

  1. Your conscience-your true self speaking softly, and God writing the divine hopes in your heart-tells you what your “musts” are. If you follow those musts, you co-create your self and your life world with God. When you refuse to follow your own authentic musts, you are obstructing the work of your passionately loving God.
  2. “Rainbows of my Life.”

Look back at your life. What do you consider as the three most life-giving experiences of your life? What has God done to you through these experiences? How did you see yourself partaking in the process of re-creating yourself?

Now, look at the desires that you carry in your heart at this point in your life. What are the deepest desires of your heart? Which of these speak of God’s hopes for you? What else does God want to do in your self? How do you intend to co-operate with Him?

FROM THOMAS MERTON,

A PRAYER

My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going,

I do not see the road ahead of me.

I cannot know for certain where it will end.

Nor do I really know myself,

and the fact that I think that I am following your will

does not mean that I am actually doing so.

But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you.

And I hope that I have that desire in all that I am doing.

I hope that I will never do anything apart from the desire.

And I know that if I do this

you will lead me by the right road though I may know nothing about it.

Therefore will I trust you always

Though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death.

I will not fear, for you are ever with me,

And will never leave me to face my perils alone.

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