Daily Reflection
October 8th, 2004
John Schlegel, S.J.
Click here for a photo of and information on this writer.

In the spiritual exercises of St. Ignatius is found a Contemplation to attain the love of God.  It is a series of reflections on how much God has blessed us because God loves each of us in an extravagant way.

The world is much with me these days, so today I simply want to sit with my God and reflect with the psalmist and “praise the Lord.”  I want God to love me.  And I want to love God.

Ours are troubling times – sounds of war, presidential politics, a stubborn economy, hurricanes, the uninsured, economic exploitation, the devaluation of life from conception to the grave.  Stop.  Enough is enough.

Stop the world I want to get off.  Sorry, no transfers!

So, take a deep breath.  Sit with God.  Listen to God.  Praise God.  Shut your eyes, open your heart and be grateful.  Just follow today’s Psalm 111: “Praise the Lord!”

“I will give thanks to the Lord with all my heart.”  Do it!  What are you thankful for? Who are you thankful for?  Why are you thankful?  How do you express your gratitude to God and to others?

“Great are the works of the Lord.”  Indeed, what specifically is “great” for you?  Begin with yourself, the wonderful mystery you are.  The gift you are to others; others as gifts to you.  The created world which surrounds you – autumn colors, mums, cheerleaders, fall football, pumpkins, harvest time, a burgeoning spring in the southern hemisphere, a harvest moon in America’s heartland, clear days on the west coast.

His righteous endures forever.  What is your experience of God’s justice?  How does God’s righteousness touch you?  Is God doing the right thing by you?  Where do you and God stand on – war and peace, poverty and affluence, hurricanes and the orange crop, insured and uninsured, Republican and Democrat, a faith manifested by justice?

The Lord is gracious and compassionate.  How?  What is your experience of the compassion of God?  Where are you and your family and friends with breast cancer, heart surgery, Alzheimer’s, depression, alienation, broken relationships?  Are you unforgiving, envious or greedy?  God walks with each of us through all of this and so much more.  For God alone is enough.

He will remember his covenant forever.  In that phrase is our freedom, our security and our future.  God is faithful.  How blessed are we because of the fidelity of our God.

So now relax, reflect, and be grateful.  For our God is great!  Praise the Lord!

I needed this reflection.  Praise the Lord!

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