Prayer of Examen

The prayer of examen is a way of honestly assessing our lives in the light of God’s mercy. We focus our reflection on a narrow time span, perhaps the previous day or week.  This prayer is not intended to be a tallying of failures and successes but an assessment of how we have lived in union with God.

The prayer of examen may be practiced in solitude, but it is ultimately about community, about our relationship to self, God and others. Because of the nature of the reflection, the prayer of examen is best practiced in the quiet of evening.

There are five parts to prayer of examen:

  • Celebrate and give thanks.
  • Pray for God’s illumination.
  • Examine the events and encounters of the day.
  • Sift through the joys, sorrows, struggles, and delights, asking God for needed grace.
  • Rest in God’s grace while living in hope for the new day to come.

Try an examen now:

  • Thank you, God, for…
  • Ever-present God, what did you see in my day today that you would like me to pay attention to?
  • What struggles and what successes did I experience today?  What touched my heart?  God, give me the grace to respond in a way that is pleasing to You.
  • Consoling God, I know you are with me always. Thank you for watching over my days and nights.
  • Rest in God’s grace while living in hope for the new day to come.
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