Considering Holy Week: The Prayer of Consideration

March 18, 2024

Dear friends,

Joseph A. Tetlow, S.J. writes of The Prayer of Consideration in his version of the Spiritual Exercises.  He says:

“Those who live busy lives in the marketplace, whose everyday life shifts from merely very full to very frantic – they know the value of this prayer.  They know that they need time to consider under God’s gaze, to ponder and wrangle and exult, to worry with Him and walk with Him. For those who bring faith and hope and God’s love into the world, consideration makes the most appropriate and necessary prayer.”

The Prayer of Consideration is an Ignatian prayer tool that gets little attention, and it is one of the prayer tools I enjoy sharing with others who live busy lives.  I often turn to the Prayer of Consideration as I ask God how I can better love and serve God in the day to day moments of my life.  I pause throughout my day to consider with God  the people I encounter, the tasks I undertake, the things I see in nature, what I read or hear, as well as the time I spend alone.  The seemingly simple prayers about ordinary moments can become some of our  greatest offerings to God.  

Next week, we enter Holy Week.   Below, I offer a Prayer of Consideration on the Last Supper.  As you simply ponder what happened, notice who Jesus encountered and his actions.  How does his model invite us to love and serve God in the people we meet and in our actions? 

Consider the People Jesus Encountered at the Last Supper:  

Who did Jesus encounter in this moment of his life?  His disciples.  The ones he invited to follow him closely.  The ones who walked with him, listened to him, learned from him.  Jesus gathered his followers at this meal and offered them a final witness of his love for them.  Ordinary people, with their individual stories of mercy and love.  They knew Jesus and he knew them.   Jesus surrounded himself with his friends. As you consider who is at the table with Jesus, take a moment to acknowledge that Jesus has been and is encountering you today through the people you met. Who are these people?  How are you being invited to love and serve God in the people you encounter? 

Consider Jesus’ Actions: 

What did  Jesus  do with his disciples? He washed their feet.  Like the waters of Baptism, he cleansed them.   As he did this to them, he instructed them to do so for others.  He broke  bread.  He shared  a meal.  He reclined at the table and spoke to them.  He gave them one last commandment, to love others as he loved them.  As you consider the actions of Jesus at the Last Supper, take a moment to acknowledge Jesus’ action in your own life today.  How has he been present to you in the ordinary moments of your life today?   What actions have you experienced or taken that are signs of Jesus’ with you today? What actions are you being invited to take to love and serve God in those you encounter?

Consider Holy Week: 

As we prepare to enter Holy week and the Triduum next week, I invite us to practice the Prayer of Consideration daily.  Notice who you encounter and give them the devoted attention Jesus gave his disciples at the Last Supper.  Notice your actions throughout the week and let them be tangible acts of Jesus out in the world. 
If you’re looking for more guidance to help you pray this Holy Week & Triduum, I recommend downloading my guided audio prayer reflections, Praying With Jesus.

 

Know of my daily  prayers for you! 

Peace,

Becky


P.S.  As our Lenten journey will come to an end soon, I invite you to consider praying with us on our Easter Retreat: Saturated in Joy.  Come spend time with Jesus, the Risen Christ and notice the way he encounters others in his Resurrection and the actions he takes to offer people hope and joy! 

 

Photo by Sixteen Miles Out on Unsplash

    Becky is an Ignatian-trained spiritual director, retreat facilitator, and writer. She is the author of the Busy Lives and Restless Souls (March 2017, Loyola Press) and The Inner Chapel (April 2020, Loyola Press). She helps others create space to connect faith and everyday life through facilitating retreats and days of reflection, through writing, and through spiritual direction. With nearly twenty years of ministry experience within the Catholic Church, Becky seeks to help others discover God at work in the every day moments of people’s lives by utilizing St. Ignatius’ Spiritual Exercises and the many gifts that our Catholic faith and Ignatian Spirituality provide.

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