Tools for discernment
Here are a few tools for discernment with very brief descriptions. Note that this list is not exhaustive.
Breath prayer: Taking deep breaths in of God’s presence, then breathing out distractions.
Journaling: Writing honest reflections about joys, challenges, and questions.
Examen: Asking at the end of each day, “When did I feel closest to God today? When did I feel most removed from God?”
Centering prayer: Sitting quietly with eyes closed, choosing an anchoring thought or image, and returning to that image anytime a distracting thought pops into your mind.
Table grace: Giving thanks before meals.
Lectio divina: Praying the scriptures, listening for a word or phrase that catches you and reflecting on what God might be saying to you through it.
Visio divina: Looking at an image, focusing on what catches your eye and reflecting on what God might be saying to you through it.
Praying the hours: Offering prayers connected to the time of day, often incorporating the psalms.
Colloquy: Imagining a prayerful give-and-take conversation with God, Jesus, or another scriptural figure.
- Where have we seen God at work?
- How do we feel in or out of sync with God?
- Where are we encountering resistance? What might God be telling us through it?
- What is God inviting us to do or consider?