Day 11 | 31 days of St Ignatius 2018

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Praying with the imagination

God in the city

Imagine that you are sitting on the side of a hill, overlooking a large city. It might be a city you know, somewhere you've once lived, or where you've had a holiday. Or it might be a plaxe that whilly exists in your imagination. Wherever it is you have in your mind's eye, take a few moments to get in touch with what it is like being there, looking out over the city.

As you sit there someone comes up to you and says with absolute conviction: 'If you go down into the city you will find God.' They say it in a way that you know that it's true. What do you feel like when you hear these words? What passes through your heart and mind as you listen to them?

And so you get up and begin to go down the hill into the city. You enter its outskirts, and then move further in towards the centre. You are moving through the streets and open areas, past buildings and across roads. How do you go about looking for God? Where do you search for him? DO you involve anyone else in your seeking, ask anyone for help? Or do you search alone?

Take all the time you need to look into all the places where you think and feel that God might be. What are the kinds of places you look at? Who are the kinds of people you are searching among? Are there any places or people you find yourself avoiding?

Eventually you find God, and again, you cannot doubt that it is God whom you have found. Where did you make your discovery? What is this God you have found like? Where, and with whom, does he choose to be found?

Spend a little time there in the presence of the God who is to be found in your city, speaking to him 'as one friend speaks to another' about what your search was like. Take time to listen out for anything that God particularly wishes to communicate to you through this prayer -exercise.

When you are ready, let your attention return to the room you are in, but be aware that you can return to that place in the city at any time, and meet God there again.

Adapted from Sadhana - A Way to God by Anthony de Mello SJ

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