the five stages of the covenant prayer

The covenant prayer, which originates from the Ignatian spiritual tradition, consists in going through one’s day under the gaze of God, in order to renew the love covenant that God has made with each person.

“Thou shalt be my people, and I will be thy God” (Jer 30:22), says the Lord. The whole Bible eventually boils down to the story of the covenant between God and man. God uses the symbolism of this covenant to speak of the love he has for his people. Thanks to this alliance, every day lived is a story of love, where God makes himself present, in himself, through others, among everyday events … But we still have to recognize him! In this sense, the covenant prayer invites us to reread our day to recognize God’s presence and action in our daily lives.

In the beginning of Spiritual exercises, St. Ignatius proposes “special and daily examination” (§24-31) to “remove a particular sin or defect.” Rooted in the tradition of self-examination, the Jesuits offer a daily study called the Covenant Prayer, to review one’s day and consider it a gift and a calling from God. A short prayer – lasting 10 to 15 minutes – that gradually allows us to become more aware of the Lord’s presence.

” Here I am “prepare to meet God

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After finding the right moment and a quiet place, the prayer begins with a sign of the cross. She then urges us to express her joy to the Lord for meeting him at this time and asking him for the light of his Holy Spirit, to regard this day with a vision similar to his own. A benevolent gaze, a gaze that includes instead of focusing on one point, a gaze that welcomes what has been, the joys and sorrows, the successes and the failures.

“Lord, here I am. You are there and you are waiting for me, I want to be with you. I want to take this moment with you to reread this day and there discover the signs and traces of your presence.”

“thanks” say thank you

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Then the moment comes to remember what was beautiful during this day, what was constructive and in relation to others, what nurtured peace, joy, what helped to create the kingdom of God … Prayer is then an opportunity to thank the Lord for the signs of His presence throughout the day: benevolent words, smiles received and addressed, generous gestures that we have witnessed … So many places where the covenant with God has been lived.

“Thank you, Lord, for life, thank you for the Spirit of your Holy Spirit who gives me life. Thank you Lord for what I have received during this day: great things and small things, meetings, times of discussion, a word, an inspiration. , a ray of sunshine … “

” Sorry ” unite

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After giving thanks for the benefits the Lord has received, it is also good to identify what has been a source of sadness, discouragement, bitterness. To identify the moments when one moved away from the kingdom of God, the moments when the covenant with God was tried: words spoken too quickly, which hurt, gestures, glances, actions that suddenly, embarrassed, hurt, indifference or lack on attention to others and to the Lord … Then the time will come to place oneself under the Lord’s merciful gaze and ask Him for forgiveness. It may also be time to pick up the strength needed to ask forgiveness from your neighbor.

“I’m sorry for everything I’ve done without you, for this or that, just apologize. Soothe anxiety in me, heal vanity in me. Give me the joy of being saved back!”

” Please “Invent with him tomorrow

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The covenant prayer is an opportunity to open up to the next day with renewed strength. It is good to express to God your desire to live this day with him. The prayer suggests going through the coming events one by one and entrusting them to the Lord and asking Him for His strength, His peace, His trust to live them according to His heart.

“Please, Lord, I want to live tomorrow with you. Give me the meaning of your will and the strength to carry it out. That is also what I ask of you for me, for my loved ones, for this or that person, sick, alone, in pain … for this world … “

” Our dad… ” open your prayer

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The prayer time can end with one Our dad, a prayer offered by the Lord Himself, which unites all the peoples of the Alliance. Then, as a sign of covenant and hope, the prayer ends with a sign of the cross.

” Our dad
who is in heaven,
Hallowed be thy name,
come this row,
Your will be done
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today
our daily bread.
Forgive us our transgressions,
which we also forgive
to those who have offended us.
And let us not be tempted,
but deliver us from evil.
Amen. »

The Jesuits suggest briefly, day by day, noting the prominent elements of this prayer. A spiritual line can then be drawn: the personal and unique way in which each one is called to follow Christ. It is also a way to better acknowledge God’s long-term presence and action in one’s life.

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