It would be easier to review the day in lament for all my selfishness and failings but that’s not what I am to do…
That’s how I began my nightly ritual, a few days ago, because that is how I felt. Perhaps because I’ve done this enough now, even when some of those times seemed like “lists” instead of conscious reconsideration, I knew that if I persevered things would change.
I’ve been consistently doing some form of Daily Examen, as an end of the day practice, for almost a year. Somehow, reviewing the day in gratitude shifts my perspective.
Looking at that day’s reflection that I began despairingly in my notebook, I see that I started my review with the end of the day. That evening, scrolling through my options for TV viewing, a Walter Brueggemann sermon was on our YouTube line up. I watched. It was a good ending to ease me into a reluctant beginning.
You see, this isn’t a “list” of things I’m thankful for or a chronological reliving of my day. For me, reviewing the day in the presence of God engenders a larger reality. It is not a utopia but reality that calls me to pay attention and trust the unfolding.
It would be easier to review the day in lament for all my selfishness and failings but that’s not what I am to do. I’ll begin at the end of this day.
I’ve dabbled in the brilliance of Walter Brueggemann and his faithfulness to both scholarship and story called me to a higher place.
I am grateful for good food—lemon blueberry bread, chicken spaghetti and broccoli—I had for dinner that was comforting and tasty and filled me up.
Mitch- always grateful for his honouring me and his humble and brilliant spirit. Grateful for Margaret sending me a recipe they liked—a new way for us to connect. For exuberant Malachi and the joy he brings. For Wade’s natural ability and intellect that keep him interested in life—for his insight and willingness to let go of some things.
I am grateful for the spider and web in the window, the circle of life before our eyes. She is back or maybe never left.
I continued in gratitude for things that expand my heart and mind for good. And I remembered why I endured to begin my review of this day in gratitude.
When I began this post, I thought more about the sermon I heard. Brueggemann titled the sermon on Psalm 31, Continuing Through the ‘Disruptive Conjunction.’ (Now you see why I had to listen.) He explained that the Psalmist’s complaints are interrupted by the conjunction “but” bringing a “moment of reflection with a pause for another reality.”
Reviewing my day was also the ‘disruptive conjunction’ that moved me from my experience of being narrowly focused on myself and what I didn’t accomplish to re-situate my experience in the mystery and goodness of God.
My times are in your hand; deliver me… Psalm 31:15