Consolation and desolation are key to discerning God’s movement in your life, but these terms are easily misunderstood.
Discernment of major decisions, like having a job you love or choosing where you live, are a privilege.
How can you use Marie Kondō’s tidying method to declutter your spiritual life. It’s simple Ignatian discernment.
Ignatian spirituality can be summed up in the few paragraphs at the beginning of the Exercises: sharing life with God and responding in gratitude to God’s gifts in freedom.
God’s incarnation makes sacred our very decisions and even the process of discernment. Every decision we make becomes an incarnation, a little Christmas through which God enters the world.
People had to discern John the Baptist’s message. Was he the messiah? What were the signs they saw? Discernment includes many signs, consolation and desolation, and movements from the spirits that prepare the way to a choice.
God illumines a light into the world through the Annunication. Mary’s yes comes in a place of freedom, hope, and not clinging. Ignatius gives us several exercises for making decisions with this kind of freedom.
Incarnation occurs all the time, even in our decisions. We are in a whirl of confusion and feel like we’re in darkness. Advent is a time of sitting with those raw feelings and emotions because discernment begins with observation.
The deep desires God plants within our hearts are ultimately oriented to the unfolding of God’s Kingdom; this includes discovering who we’re meant to be.