Attention, Reverence, and Devotion

Something to think about | In what I believe to be the best, most succinct description of how to live a life attuned to God’s presence, Ignatius counseled his young novices to do the following.

First, bring focus to your life by taking the time to listen to others and to see what lies before you. Bring yourself to a self-possession before reality. Then give your attention (maybe attentiveness is a better word) to what is really there. For example, let that person or that poem or that social injustice or that scientific experiment become as genuinely itself as it can be. Then reverence what you see before you.

Reverence is giving acceptance to, cherishing the differences of, holding in awe the uniqueness of another reality. So, before you judge or assess or respond, give yourself time to esteem and accept what is there in the other. And if you learn to do this, Ignatius urged, then you will gradually discover devotion, the singularly moving way in which God works in that situation, revealing goodness and fragility, beauty and truth, pain and anguish, wisdom and ingenuity.

Attention, reverence, and devotion establish the process for finding God in all things.

Howard Gray, SJ
Ignatius’s Method for Letting God Shine through Life’s Realities

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