Allow God’s Gaze to Rest on You

eye gazing from space - image by Peace,love,happiness from Pixabay

I led a half-day retreat for Directors of Religious Education at a nearby parish. These are the men and women who work hard all year through, helping to care for the faith of others. They are nearly always “on duty,” organizing, running, and problem-solving within their parish faith formation programs.

The weather had finally come around to spring qualities. We were at an expansive retreat center with lawns and water and trees and stately buildings. I had come with sort of a plan, but I nearly always finalize plans as we go, reading the audience and the situation and designing the kinds of exercises and activities that seem to fit best. I took one look at the 20-plus DREs and knew what the first assignment would be. First, I read from The Church of Mercy, by Pope Francis:

Let us also remember Peter: three times he denied Jesus, precisely when he should have been closest to him. And when he hits rock bottom, he meets the gaze of Jesus who patiently, wordlessly, says to him, “Peter, don’t be afraid of your weakness, trust in me.” Peter understands, he feels the loving gaze of Jesus, and he weeps. How beautiful is this gaze of Jesus—how much tenderness is there! Brothers and sisters, let us never lose trust in the patience and mercy of God!

The assignment: Spend 20 minutes outdoors and focus only on this: God’s gaze upon you. Meditate on what it means that God gazes on you with love. If any other thoughts arrive, say, “I’ll talk to you later; goodbye,” and send them on their way.

I leave you with this same assignment: Spend time basking in God’s gaze.

  • How do you bask in God’s gaze? Do you sit still, walk, say prayers, do some kind of meditation?
  • How would you describe the gaze of God?

Image by Peace,love,happiness from Pixabay.


  1. Thanks Vinita. The Gaze of the immortal God is soothing, merciful, and compassionate. Such a gaze is an invitation to re-making, re-shaping and re-launching one’s energies in a constructive way for worldbuilding.

  2. Thank you for this encouragement to be still and bask in God’s gaze of love. Like Luisa I always feel particularly aware of God’s closeness in the outdoors, walking in woodlands or by water, places where I can just listen to the sounds of Nature or bask in silence. If there is intrusive sound I use noise cancelling earbuds or ambient music so I can focus. Thinking of God’s gaze also reminds me of a poem by George Herbert called ‘The Glance’ which describes how God’s “full-eyed love” will “look us out of pain.” It is so reassuring to know, especially when we are struggling in any way, that God’s loving gaze is always resting upon us.

  3. Thank you very much. It is beautiful what you said about God’s gaze.. I always believe in the Fact that God is always gazing at me and making me understand that no matter what happens He remains faithful.

    My communion with God has always been with Nature and I find stillness among the trees and the plants as well. And so taking time to read this affirms again the greatness of God’s love through his gaze to each one of us.

  4. On a retreat, I was given a card, written on it were the words, “Behold God, beholding you and smiling”. These words are written in my mind, especially on difficult days. It is a thoughtful exchange of love holding me in His arms.

  5. What a powerful way to meditate thinking of how God gazes at me. The picture on the top is so vivid, a strong image of God overlooking me from above. This will truly help me in my contemplative prayer. Thank you Vinita.


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