Great Prayer Tool for Catholic Professionals: The Jesuit Daily Examen

Man at Prayer

Man at Prayer

Over the years I have had numerous discussions with Catholic professionals around the country about making time for prayer and reflection during the busy work day.  People have been interested in how I keep the Jesuit Daily Examen on my calendar, so I am sharing it here along with suggested times.  The Examen is one of the most effective (and easiest) ways I know to have scheduled reflection and prayer throughout the day.  Save it as an ongoing and daily occurrence on your computer/smartphone calendars and try following it faithfully (3-5 minutes for each one)…it will make a real difference in your life!

Daily Examen for Busy Business People

1.    Thanksgiving                   6:45 am

Begin by relaxing into God’s presence in an attitude of thankfulness.  Find one thing to be thankful for-even if you are having a tough time.  Allow gratitude to take hold of you.

2.    Pray for Insight               10:15 am

Pray to the Holy Spirit to reveal to you what you need at this time.  Consciously open yourself to God’s light.

3.    Finding God in All Things           1:15 pm

This is the heart of the prayer where you examine very concretely the events of the day.

  • What happened since this morning?
  • Who have you come in contact with?
  • What occupies your thoughts today?
  • How are you being drawn to God in your life today?  Now?
  • Where is God calling you specifically this day?
  • Is it time to make a tough decision that will affect the lives of many people?
  • Should I simply bask in gratefulness to God for my life, career in family?

This is not a time for searching for faults.  Rather it is a chance to take a step back and recognize that God is active in the entirety of the day.

4.    Petition                5:30 pm

Express to God your desires.  Again be specific and frame your prayer here in a petition:  “Dear Lord, at this time I ask….for strength to…for courage to….for the resolve to…to be thankful for…”

5.    Resolve for the Future               9:00 pm

Finally, look to the future.  “How shall I live the rest of the day?”  “What shall I do?

Finish with a prayer, for example, the Our Father.

 

Editor’s Note:  Randy Hain writes about integrating faith & work in his award-winning book The Catholic Briefcase: Tools for Integrating Faith and Work (Foreword by Pat Lencioni).

Take a look at Randy Hain’s fifth and newest book, Journey to Heaven: A Road Map for Catholic Men (Emmaus Road Publishing).  The book is available through Amazon.com, EmmausRoad.org, Barnes&Noble or found in your local Catholic bookstore.  His sixth book, Joyful Witness: How to Be an Extraordinary Catholic (Servant Books) is available for pre-order on Amazon.


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