As we conclude this week’s journey, let’s engage in the spiritual practice of Examen, focusing on the interplay between the fear of God and the fear of man in our lives. This quiet time of reflection allows us to discern how these two types of fear have influenced our decisions and behaviors throughout the week.
Reflect on the instances where the fear of God – a reverent awe and respect for His will and commandments – has positively shaped your decisions and actions. These moments might have involved standing up for what is right, making choices that honor God, or finding strength to resist temptations. Acknowledging these instances is an opportunity to thank God for His guidance and to recognize the growth in your spiritual journey.
Conversely, it’s important to confess and contemplate the times when fear of man prevailed. These are moments when you might have sought approval or validation from others at the expense of God’s will, or when anxiety about others’ opinions led you away from the path God intended for you. Recognizing these moments is not about self-condemnation, but about seeking God’s forgiveness and wisdom to make different choices in the future.
This Examen is a powerful tool for spiritual growth, helping us to become more attuned to God’s presence and guidance in our daily lives. It fosters a deeper understanding of how to live out our faith in a world where the fear of man can often seem overpowering
- What moment this week are you most thankful for?
- When did you feel closest to or furthest from God?
- What will you ask God for as you move into the next week?
In these moments of contemplation, let us embrace both gratitude for God’s presence and a humble recognition of our need for His continual guidance. As we prepare to step into the next week, let’s ask God for the wisdom, courage, and strength to choose His way over the world’s, trusting that in Him we find true fulfillment and peace.