Part of the rich tradition of the Church is recognizing the need to reflect on the day's activities—to remember God's initiation and invitation and our response or lack of response (which is immediately met with grace.) An early church father, Ignatius of Loyola developed a simple method by which you can review each day in a way that will help you grow in self-understanding, relish God’s grace towards you and free you to follow God's will. This practice is often called the Daily Examen. Many people choose to practice this prayerful review of their day before going to bed at night by following the five steps below.
- Stillness: Recalling God's Presence
- Gratitude: Expressing Thankfulness
- Reflection: Looking Back on Your Day
- Sorrow: Asking for Forgiveness
- Hopefulness: Assured of Forgiveness and Resolving to Grow
As we approach Election Day this week, it’s always helpful to remember that our hope is ultimately in God, not politics. Behind all the complexity and troubling realities of our present day, He is very much alive and on the throne.
We invite you to use this prayer of Examen as a way to connect with God and allow him to shape your life in this season.
The Examen for the Election is an adapted form of the Daily Examen, but follows much of the same pattern. (Thanks to Rich Villodas and New Life NYC for the idea.)