HomedotMagisExamenAn Examen for the Second Week of Lent

An Examen for the Second Week of Lent

From Ashes to Glory - Pray for LightThis post is part of the Lenten series “From Ashes to Glory.”

The Word

“Whoever wishes to be great among you must be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you must be your slave; just as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

—Matthew 20:26-28


How do I serve? I absorb my culture’s values, and I recognize that I am too much focused on myself and my needs. I want to absorb the values of Christ, so I ask Christ to shed light on my efforts to serve. How do I connect with others? How do I serve their needs? How can I do better? I choose to follow Christ, but I know I cannot even start without the light of the Holy Spirit.

1. Give Thanks. I thank God for this day, for my life, for all I am and have, and for His Word.

2. Pray for Light. I ask the Father to let me see my day as the Holy Spirit sees it, and to show me what I need to see.

3. Find God. I look at my day in the light of the Spirit.
I look back over the morning, the afternoon, and the evening.
Who talked with me or worked with me?
Did I get done what I meant to do or leave things out?
Have I followed my own path? Have I done what everyone does?

4. Anything Wrong?
Did something go bad?
Is my work incomplete?
I feel the sorrow of painful situations that I cannot change.

5. What Now?
I look forward in hope.
Where do I need God?


You stood, Lord Jesus, your head bowed,
looking down at the ground
while they lied and dredged through thickets of falsehood.
Then when You said the truth one more time
they tore their garments, pulled their hair,
and yelled their throats raw cursing You.
Lord Jesus, defend me from my own lies.
I know with all my heart that you are Christ.
I know that you suffered for my sins.
I wish I could break my heart with sorrow over this.
If I do not know how, visit me and show me.
Lord of Compassion, share your passion with me.
I am afraid to ask, but still I say it.

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Joseph Tetlow, SJ
Joseph Tetlow, SJ
Joseph Tetlow, SJ, has spent his life sharing the message of Ignatian spirituality. His books Choosing Christ in the World and Always Discerning are considered classics of modern spirituality. Fr. Tetlow continues lecturing and writing. His latest book is Considering Jesus. He resides at Montserrat Jesuit Retreat House in Lake Dallas, Texas.


  1. A different day began with the news that gun shots were fired into a nearby house last night. No one was hurt. Through the Grace of God. I haven’t heard from my son in 2 days. But prayer always puts my love into perspective.
    I’m Blessed and must continue to have faith and do God’s work.

  2. Very busy restoring our daughter home, it’s amazing what damage water can do. So very grateful for insights and keeping me on track!

  3. I wish I could break my heart with sorrow. I was very uncomfortable with this line. I do not believe that Christ wants to break our hearts. Certainly we need to feel compassion for all that was done to Him. During this time of the Virus, watching all these people die our hearts are broken on a daily basis.

  4. Life is not about me, it is about pushing the Christ out of me for others to see. The Christ that so willing stretched out his arms for me. A wonderful, thoughtful, contemplative prayer. Thank you


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