Jesus shows me how friends love
Spiritual Exercise 58
First I take a cross and place it to hand.
Immediately on waking, I recall people I know who need love and imagine bringing them to Jesus. I get dressed with thoughts like these.
At my prayer place, I make a gesture of reverence and humility.
I ask for the grace to direct my whole self toward Jesus who loves.
I desire to love with Jesus.
I read the prayer texts to see how Jesus loves. Then, in three steps I pray:
1. Jesus loves me. I choose one of the loving relationships in the prayer texts. I use my imagination to enter the scene as the one needing love. I fill in the details of place, people, and conversation. I come to Jesus and let the scene unfold.
2. As a friend of Jesus, I love others. I use my imagination to bring before me a person I know in need of love. I fill in the details of place. I imagine what we might say. I let the scene unfold as I befriend and love like Jesus.
3. I see my part in the great unfolding story of divine friendship, creation, salvation, and eternal life. I imagine, in detail, the effects of my love radiating forward into the long future. I see more and more people, communities, and even the earth and its creatures loving one another and acting out of that love.
Conversation of the Senses
In reverence, I take my cross, symbol of love. I bless it.
With the cross in my hands, Jesus and I share how we feel about our friendship. Then we consider how I might love those I have remembered in this prayer.
It was nine o’clock in the morning when they crucified him. Those who passed by derided him. In the same way the chief priests, along with the scribes, were also mocking him among themselves and saying, “He saved others; he cannot save himself. Let the Messiah, the King of Israel, come down from the cross now, so that we may see and believe.” When it was noon, darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon.
At three o’clock Jesus cried out with a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Then Jesus gave a loud cry and breathed his last. Now when the centurion, who stood facing him, saw that in this way he breathed his last, he said, “Truly this man was God’s Son!” (Mk 15:25, 29–32a, 33–37, 39)
Love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. (Jn 15:12–13)
I say to you that listen, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you. If anyone strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also; and from anyone who takes away your coat do not withhold even your shirt. Give to everyone who begs from you; and if anyone takes away your goods, do not ask for them again. Do to others as you would have them do to you. (Lk 6:27–31)
Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. (1 Cor 13:4–7)
The Lord, your God, is in your midst, a warrior who gives victory; he will rejoice over you with gladness, he will renew you in his love; he will exult over you with loud singing as on a day of festival. (Zep 3:17–18a)
Time: 35 Minutes
Preparation: 10 minutes. Opening Prayer: 1 minute. Desire: 1 minute. Prayer: 20 minutes. Conversation: 3 minutes. Listening Book: 10 minutes.
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