Stay where you find fruit. This direction from Ignatius is very wise. If I’ve experienced fruit—consolation, some wonderful insight, a closeness to God, even a new awareness—I can trust that that gift is a signal from God: “Look deeper here, my dear friend, for I have so much more I want to give you.” Another way of looking at this is to imagine receiving a gift, all wrapped in paper and ribbon and a big bow. I can know it’s a gift, and even know who the giver is, and even say, “Thank you,” without opening it. This direction from Ignatius invites us to explore the gift and discover what it really is.
—Excerpted from Retreat in the Real World by Andy Alexander, SJ; Maureen McCann Waldron; and Larry Gillick, SJ