Santuario De Loyola, Basque Country, Spain
“…Ignatian tradition of active contemplation (which) emphasizes the value of the imagination. The aim of such prayer is to internalize the good news of God’s unconditional love and Christ’s presence as a source of personal healing. Being contemplative in the Ignatian sense means two things. First, it means taking time off and away for solitude. In this free and friendly space, we can be with ourselves and enjoy a perspective provided by prayer that allows us to be more attentive to the movements of God’s grace in our lives. Second, contemplation is the form of prayer by which we actively use our imagination to help us “see” the choices that grace invites us to make in response to the challenges of our life situation. Prayer also sharpens our sense of the presence of God abiding with us as we take adult responsibility for shaping our lives more and more into the pattern of Jesus’ life.” (E-book locations 637-642) from Wilkie Au, and Noreen Cannon. Urgings of the Heart: A Spirituality of Integration. New York: Paulist Press. 1995.
Take from 30 to 60 minutes for an active contemplation, entering into an experience of God’s love:
Biblical Passage: The Baptism of Jesus in the Jordan (Mk 1: 9-11; Mt 3:13-17; Lk 3: 21-22)
At that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. 10 Just as Jesus was coming up out of the water, he saw heaven being torn open and the Spirit descending on him like a dove. 11 And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” (Mk 1: 9-11 NIV)
Little Miami River in Ohio Jordan River
1. Ask God to grace you with presence during your time of active contemplation.
2. Read the Scripture through once or twice getting a feel for what is going on.
3. Visualize yourself there at this time as an observer and watch the whole event unfold.
4. Enter the scene imaginatively and imagine John the Baptist calling you to him. Feel the water lapping around your knees. What are your feet touching? Are you scared? Are other people watching you? Approach John the Baptist and let him pour the water of the Jordan over your head. How does it feel? Are your eyes closed?
5. Hear the words of the Creator of the Universe speak to you: You are my son/daughter, whom I love, with you I am well pleased.
6. Imagine the spirit of a loving God fill you from head to toe.
7. Take some moments to write about your experience.
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