A Contemplative Practice as You Begin the New Year
Happy New Year! I hope that this next year is one that is filled with good surprises for you. As we enter the New Year, it is always good to reflect on the past, taking a spiritual inventory to help us to discern what God might have for us in the future. This is an Ignatius practice that my spiritual director taught me years ago. It’s called the Grand Examen. It involves taking some time to contemplate four areas of our lives. Here are the areas to reflect upon.
1. A LOOKING BACK
Using the power of memory, retrospectively review the past year and deliberately exercise the discipline of noticing.
2. A LOOKING THROUGH
Dependent upon the mind of Christ, discern the apparent connections and deeper meaning in your experiences (themes and patterns).
3. A LOOKING FORWARD
Relying on a sanctified imagination, envision future direction (what and where God’s calling/leading may be).
4. A LOOKING AROUND
Drawing on the resources of community (the gift of ‘one anothering), determine needed support and structure to press on toward the new year.
As you start the new year, join me in the grand examen and lets listen to what the Spirit has to say to us as we begin a whole new year. May this year be a rich and rewarding one for you.
HAPPY NEW YEAR! Welcome 2013!