By, James N. Alexander
As of late I have been attempting to incorporate the Examen into my daily life. For those who do not know the Examen is, it is a mediation on one’s day normally done just before going to sleep. It was developed by St. Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Jesuits. The prayer calls us to look over the events of the day and see what God is trying to show us. I think the Examen can help when we are recovering from our hectic lives.
There are times when you are going through the Examen and you start to see these points of connection in our lives that God is using to speak to us. When praying feelings of failures may start to bubble up, but that’s not the Examen is for though. It is to bring attention to those events and emotions that we are going through to discern what God is telling us about those events and to have gratitude.
In many of his writings, St. Ignatius tells us to be thankful for our day and to look upon it with gratitude, which is something I can be better at. Being thankful for the good times is easy but showing gratitude in those “dark night of soul” moments can very difficult for a lot of people. I think is that great thing about the Examen. It teaches us to become more aware of God in our lives. The best way to sum up the Examen is simply “finding God in all things”.