To some people life appears to be passing by at an alarming rate! To others the rate seems slower. With roles and responsibilities to carry out and the constant bombardment of communications, from a variety of sources, it can be a challenge to slow down, and to stop and be grateful for God’s provision for us.
One way that has had a positive effect on enabling me to slow down and reflect on the events of the day with gratitude has been The Examen. Many of you may be familiar with this exercise which was described by St Ignatius of Loyola as part of his Spiritual Exercises. It is in essence a five step exercise and is well documented and described (https://www.ignatianspirituality.com/ignatian-prayer/the-examen). However, I have found Ian Adam’s take on it particularly helpful as he incorporates gestures into the steps (Running Over Rocks by Ian Adams, Published by Canterbury Press Norwich, 2013 p.98).
- Be still and become aware of the presence of God.(Open your hand)
- Review the events of the day with gratitude.(Place your hands on your heart)
- Recall the emotions you have experienced during the day, and consider why you felt this way. (Place your hands on your stomach)
- Select one moment/element of the day and pray about it. (Hands to lips)
- Look forward to tomorrow. (Open your hands again)
I invite you to pray The Examen daily during this series.