St Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits, who is remembered this coming week, wrote the Suscipe Prayer below. It comes towards the end of the Spiritual Exercises, which Ignatius wrote as a guide to help people deepen their relationship with God. It is a prayer of surrender, suscipe means receive. The prayer invites us to offer up to God all that we are and all that we have.
Many people will be taking time out over the coming weeks for holidays, for rest and refreshment. As well as time to relax and recharge it is also a chance to reflect on our relationship with God. You might like to use this prayer during this time. Look back on what God has given you over this last year, the many blessings. Where have you known God’s affection and care, guidance, challenge and inspiration? Reflect on your own life and what has been going on this last year. Offer to God your past and present and hopes for the future. Allow space and time to soak up God’s love and grace. This might be inspired by seeing new places, reconnecting with family and those closest to you, taking time to explore and discover. In a culture where there never seems to be enough, to be able to truly say ‘that is enough for me’ is radical. That’s true peace and rest. It will inspire how we engage with the rest of life, help us let go of the insatiable appetite for more, more things, more influence, more money, more likes or friends on social media. Holiday comes from the old English word hāligdæg meaning ‘holy day’. Allow this prayer to lead you into a time of refreshment and peace, a true ‘holiday’.
Take, Lord, and receive all my liberty,
my memory, my understanding,
and my entire will,
All I have and call my own.
You have given all to me.
To you, Lord, I return it.
Everything is yours; do with it what you will.
Give me only your love and your grace,
that is enough for me.
A Prayer of St Ignatius of Loyola
Revd Katherine Hedderly