Love – Week 10

This is Week 10 of Desires of the Heart, a 10-week series on Ignatian spirituality and prayer. The text below is meant to companion the audio teaching. Click play and feel free to follow along. You may also download a PDF this week’s “handout” here.


“Do you not know that you are God’s temple
and that God’s Spirit dwells in you?” – 1 Corinthians 3:16 (NRSV)


BACKGROUND
girl at fountainAfter almost a month of meditations on the life and death of Jesus, sin, evil, and our response to Jesus’ invitation in our lives, the Spiritual Exercises concludes with a meditation on the Resurrection of Christ and then the Contemplation on the Love of God. This final and peak meditation wraps up all the experiences of God in our life and in salvation history and directs our view toward our real experience of communion with the divine: our identity in the divine.

St Ignatius gives us two things to first consider:

  • Love ought to show itself more in deeds than in words
  • Love consists in a mutual sharing of goods, an exchange

Then we ask for a grace: To have an intimate knowledge of all the goods which God lovingly shares with me, and in gratitude to respond totally in love and service.

My contemplation prayer now stems from these four themes:

  1. God’s gifts to me
  2. God’s self-giving to me
  3. God’s labours for me
  4. God’s unceasing giving and gifting

TAKE, LORD, AND RECEIVE ALL MY LIBERTY, MY MEMORY, MY UNDERSTANDING, AND MY ENTIRE WILL—ALL THAT I HAVE AND CALL MY OWN. YOU HAVE GIVEN IT ALL TO ME. TO YOU, LORD, I RETURN IT. EVERYTHING IS YOURS; DO WITH IT WHAT YOU WILL. GIVE ME ONLY YOUR LOVE AND YOUR GRACE. THAT IS ENOUGH FOR ME.

“…at the end of the Spiritual Exercises, you and the Divine become one. Not only do you and God become one, but also everything is seen as a manifestation of the Divine. You look at a tree and see God and experience God. It is a manifestation of the Divine. It is the presence of the Divine that makes a tree a tree. It is a miracle.” – Paul Coutinho, SJ

RESOURCES

If you would like to offer this 10-week series to your group or parish you can download a full PDF of the programme here. Contributions are requested if you offer it in active ministry setting.

Listen to the audio teaching and meditation…

Music by Kevin MacLeod

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