Several Christian artists have written songs that refer to God’s “fingerprints” in our lives. We may have to look for them, but our lives are covered with signs of God’s love at work in us, although sometimes these signs are hidden. How can we grow in awareness of God’s presence and saving love in our life? Here are four simple ways to get started:
1. List your life—all the big events of your life. Can you see a pattern of how God has been present in your life? Later, you may wish to bring one of the events on your list to prayer.
2. Choose one of the events in your life that has influenced you and journal about it. (You can also bring it to prayer.)
3. If there’s a time in your life that you feel God wasn’t present, simply bring that hurt to God in prayer and ask him to reveal to you, at the best moment, how God was with you.
4. Make it a practice to bring your day or week to a prayerful review with the examen. (I’ll post more on how to do this later. If you want to get started right away, you can visit Father Michael Denk’s website and download his Examen App.)
Sometimes it is easier to enter into a new awareness by actively doing or creating something helps us to reflect with images, craftsmanship, or physical activity. Try one (or both) of the following:
- Make a timeline, patchwork, or scrapbook of your own life – which includes both the “outer” or visible significant events of your life, and the “inner” or invisible significant events.
- Draw your life as a pathway. Has it gone up a mountain, or through a dark forest? What signposts have shown you the way? Have you crossed beautiful meadows? Hit any roadblocks? What are the landmarks or milestones on your path? Where did your path begin, and where does it lead?