First Spiritual Exercises – Endangered Family
As shepherds seek out their flocks when they are among their scattered sheep, so I, the Lord, will seek out my sheep. I will rescue them from all the places to which they have been scattered on a day of clouds and thick darkness. I will bring them out from the peoples and gather them from the countries, and will bring them into their own land; and I will feed them. I will seek the lost, and I will bring back the strayed, and I will bind up the injured, and I will strengthen the weak. I will feed them with justice.
Ezekial 34:11-13, 16
We pray for the endangered refugee families in South Sudan, that they may be able to reunite and find peace. We pray that the Spirit comforts them during this time of great need and that they continue to receive vital emergency support from our project partners in the region.
1. Desire...I hold a branch – symbol of Family.
I hold a branch, symbol of a family tree. I consider how vital a family is to all, yet when families flee violence, war, poverty and abuse, they are broken, divided, scattered, injured, lost and killed, husband from wife, parent from child, brother from sister.
I ask the Spirit for the gift of a healed and re-united Family, my own or another family.
2. Relish...Today I live in the Trinitarian Family.
I imagine I am surrounded in a circle of the Trinitarian Family. Father, Jesus and Spirit, address me by name, saying, ‘I will seek you out and bring you home.’
Uncertain how this will be, given the real obstacles and barriers of family separation, I sit awhile with my desire, in the mystery of the Trinitarian Family.
I relish my family together.
3. Family... I breathe in the Spirit of Family
I imagine and feel the Spirit of Family, joy and sorrow, breathing love into me.
I breathe it in deep, wait, then breathe it out through my broken family, or to bring to life a child traumatized, orphaned, enslaved, or lost in the thick darkness of events. I repeat as desired – breathing, loved, at one with family.
I conclude placing lost family in God's hands, and giving thanks for my family found.
PRAYER TIME: 10 minutes.
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