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Thanks Be to God

My daily time in prayer has a structure to it, a structure that’s recommended by St. Ignatius of Loyola.

The first step in prayer, Ignatius says, is to remind yourself that you are in the presence of God. No matter where you are – in your bedroom, walking alongside a river, in traffic – you recall that “you are a creature in the midst of creation,” and that God is with you.

The second step is to go back over the past day and give thanks to God for favors received.

It’s that step I want to talk about today. This step – of looking back and giving thanks – is so important, especially for those of us who have perfectionist tendencies or who are future-oriented. That’s because taking time out of each day to look back over the past day and give thanks to God for the good things that happened focuses our attention on the good things that DID happen that would otherwise (because of our perfectionist tendencies or future-orientation) be overlooked.

There will be other times to focus our attention on what God is calling us to do in the future. But for now, please just join me in pausing for a minute to look back at last week, and say, “Our God is an awesome God.”

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