The Spiritual Exercises are divided into four phases, called “weeks.” After the retreat experience is over, however, we face “the Fifth Week”—the rest of our lives. Andy Otto explains:
A retreat director once told me as my retreat was ending that as I went back to daily life the graces I gained on the retreat were mine. I could go back to them any time I wanted. Our encounter with God whether on a retreat or in a moment of prayer is a reality that we can recall any time we feel ourselves slipping backwards. The Fifth Week of our lives is a continual “re-collecting” of the graces given to us before and continuing to deepen our friendship with the divine.
What graces do you need to re-collect this week so that you can deepen your friendship with God?
I wonder if you experience the “re-collecting” of grace as a respite from daily life, adding meaning, or as a basis in life, meaning coming from other places, like friends. Obviously, on needs each, or both. How do you maintain that search for balance? Thanks
What a great concept, Andy. Some days I feel like a sieve, and grace seems to slip right out. I need constant refilling. But I need to remember that God is constantly infilling with boundless grace.