Asking “What Now?”

From Ashes to Glory - What Now?This post is a part of the Lenten series “From Ashes to Glory.”

When settling on what to do tomorrow—the fifth prayer moment in the Examen—we keep two things in mind. First, love consists in this: “not that we loved God, but that God loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins” (1 John 4:10). We want to live a holy life not because we thought it up, but because the Father chose us, Christ calls us, and the Spirit guides us.

And second, all that is holy has love at its core. Being with Jesus, being his servant, is being in love.

Christ’s disciples accept love from God. We honor one another and ourselves. Whatever we do lovingly for others—especially the helpless and the needy—we do for God. So we try to set ourselves to do everything for the love of God.

God loves a humble heart. We will learn humility if we steadily examine our thoughts, words, and deeds. We learn more deeply that Jesus Christ is the eternal center of our lives. Everything orbits around Him. Praise Him.

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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. Very helpful insights. We do this “not because we thought it up..” My little story, however important to me and a few others, is part of a larger story. God’s story. And that brings with it a nobility and purpose that charges me up and also liberates me. Free to be counted among God’s beloved sons and daughters.

  2. “Whatever we do lovingly for others—especially the helpless and the needy—we do for God.” I find this encouraging, as a mom. My own children might not seem “helpless and needy”, but without their father and me they would be! And even now they need their mother. So I don’t have to look far to find opportunities to do for God by doing things lovingly for our girls. (I need to remember this when I’m feeling swamped in the mundane requirements of daily life at home with them!)


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