Examen – Week 4
A guided examination of consciousness related to vainglory
Spend a few moments in silence…
Become aware of God’s presence…
Think back over the day:
- What did you work on today?
- What were your primary emotions today?
- When were you anxious today?
- When did you feel fear or tension or frustration in your spirit today?
Think about this quote regarding vainglory:
“The glory we seek is vain if we seek glory for the wrong things, from the wrong people, or for the wrong reasons.” Kevin Vost, 7 Deadly Sins
Think about the people you encountered and your interactions with them:
- Who were you looking for approval from today? Whose presence “lurked” over your day? (i.e. who were you primarily attuned to, pre-consciously aware of, intimidated by, etc.)
- In what ways did you try to make yourself seem important? Who were you trying to impress today with your knowledge or ideas? Did you “power-up” on anyone or make anyone else look small in order to make yourself larger?
- Did you feel the desire (or succumb to the desire) to flatter anyone?
- When did you use humour today to try to sound clever and draw attention to yourself?
- When you chose your clothing this morning and got ready for the day, whom did you have in mind? What did you hope people would notice (if anything) about you?
- When, and in what ways, were you present to God as your primary audience today? Were you able to work as “unto the Lord”? Were you able to offer gratitude and turn to God in intercession for others throughout the day?
Did you see others… really see them in their full God-given glory today? Were you able to love them with Christ’s love?
John 12.37 & 42-43
Although he (Jesus) had performed so many signs in their presence, they (crowds) did not believe in him...
Nevertheless many, even of the authorities, believed in him. But because of the Pharisees they did not confess it, for fear that they would be put out of the synagogue; for they loved human glory more than the glory that comes from God.
Offer a prayer of confession:
Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbours as ourselves. We are truly sorry and we humbly repent. For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name. Amen.
Give thanks that despite our sin and failings we have a saviour, Jesus, who we are united to by faith so that his life becomes our life, and so we are fully accepted by God.
It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God – that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. Therefore, as it is written: ‘Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord’. 1 Corinthians 1.30-31
End your time of reflection by offering thanksgiving for all that God brings to mind.