Ignatian Retreat in Daily Life

"FInding God in all Things"

Meditation on Our Sins - Part B

                                                (Printable version in Word)

 

Theme

Discovering my constant need of God’s forgiving love.

 

 

Preparing for the period of prayer

 

1.  I come into God's life-giving presence and offer my­ self to Him. I remember that

     God is the One who beholds me with compassion and delight and who is relentless in

     seeking to bless me with freedom.

2.       Then, I compose myself in my real world. I consider how I live surrounded by  violence and anger, in a deteriorating environment steeped in self-deception, untruth, and error, and under genuine threat of terrorist annihilation. I consider that I have taken much of this disorder into myself, some of it before I had free choice.

 

3.  I now ask God for what I yearn, the Grace/Desire being sought this week:  “To feel the weight and sorrow of sin in my own life, that I may more deeply know the healing and renewing power of God’s forgiving love in my life.”

 

4.  Address this prayer of desire, first to God the Father, then to Mary, the mother of Jesus, then to Jesus, himself. Or,

*4. Address this prayer of desire, first to God the Source of Life, then to God the Source of Wisdom and Goodness, then to God Creator and Comforter.

 

5.  Continue below.

 

 

Consider:   

 

Luke 9:25  Jesus asked his disciples, “What gain, then, is it for a man to have won the whole world and to have lost or ruined his very self?”

 

Now, I weigh my sins.

                  

I look steadily at the ugliness of my sins, how revolting these actions and words were. I see that my sins would be wretched things even were they not against God's commands or my own conscience.

Then I look steadily at myself. Who am I, who do these things? Am I the best and most important person around? Does my value outweigh the value of all the saints and an­gels—that I should insist on having my own way over against God's hopes? Sometimes I seem to be a canning factory whose every tin is steeped in salmonella; everything I touch is tinged with selfishness.

 

 

 Next, I look at all God's creation.

 

When I look at the beautiful order in the uni­verse and in the consciousness of animals and birds, I am astounded that they did not turn on me, each in its own way, as a serious blotch on the beauty. While I refused to be my true self, gravity held me and the sun refused to burn me to a crisp. When I did hideous things, flowers offered me their fragrances nonetheless and birds still sang when I walked around. Even though I was deeply alienated from God, the laws He printed into earth and sea and air sustained me—air filled my lungs, food digested in my system, light entered my eyes. And I was totally out of sync! More than that: Why weren't holy people moved by the Spirit to end my evildoing, if not me my­self? How could God's angels have kept pro­tecting me, instead of cutting me down? Why didn't the earth swallow me up? Why wasn't I snatched off to the place where a lot of people just like me have gone?

 

 

Finally, I will turn to God my merciful Lord. I will say to God whatever occurs to me, pouring out my thoughts, and saying thanks that He has given me life through all this up to this moment. I deter­mine to do none of this again, if God will help me. And I end with the Our Father.

 

                                                              (Printable version in Word)