Table of contents
- 1 Prayers Before Sleep
- 2 Upon Retiring
- 3 Goodnight Prayer for Blessings
- 4 A Bedtime Prayer to Stop an Anxious Heart
- 5 Giving Thanks Evening Prayer
- 6 A Short Night-time Prayer (2 Timothy 1:7)
- 7 Popular Child’s Bedtime Prayer, 18th Century
- 8 A Beautiful Prayer to End the Day
- 9 Father, We Thank Thee
- 10 Bedtime Prayer (song by Twila Paris)
- 11 The Examen (Evening Reflection)
Prayers Before Sleep
The Prayer of St. Ephraim the Syrian
(This prayer is read in all the Holy Great Lent, except on Saturdays and Sundays)
O Lord and Master of my life, a spirit of idleness, despondency, ambition, and idle talking give me not. (Prostration)
But rather a spirit of chastity, humble-mindedness, patience, and love bestow upon me Thy servant. (Prostration)
Yea, O Lord King, grant me to see my failings and not condemn my brother; for blessed art Thou unto the ages of ages. Amen. (Prostration)
O God, cleanse me a sinner. (12 times, with a reverence each time), and then the entire prayer:
O Lord and Master of my life, a spirit of idleness, despondency, ambition, and idle talking give me not. But rather a spirit of chastity, humble-mindedness, patience, and love bestow upon me Thy servant. Yea, O Lord King, grant me to see my failings and not condemn my brother; for blessed art Thou unto the ages of ages. Amen. (Prostration)
Read in English according to the Jordanville Prayer Book, 1986. Courtesy for POMOG parishioners only. Other visitors are encouraged to purchase these prayers at the OCRB web-site.
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In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
O Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, for the sake of the prayers of Thy most pure Mother, of our holy and God-bearing fathers and all the saints, have mercy on us. Amen.
Glory to Thee, our God, glory to Thee.
O Heavenly King, Tone 6
O Heavenly King, Comforter, Spirit of Truth, Who art everywhere present and fillest all things, Treasury of good things and Giver of Life, come and dwell in us, and cleanse us of all impurity, and save our souls, O Good One.
Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal, have mercy on us. (Thrice)
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.
O Most Holy Trinity, have mercy on us. O Lord, blot out our sins; O Master, pardon our iniquities; O Holy One, visit and heal our infirmities, for Thy name’s sake.
Lord, have mercy. (Thrice)
Glory to the Father, and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.
Our Father, Who art in the heavens, hallowed be Thy Name. Thy Kingdom come. Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.
Troparia, Tone 6
Have mercy on us, O Lord, have mercy on us; for at a loss for any defense, this prayer do we sinners offer unto Thee as Master: have mercy on us.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
Lord, have mercy on us; for we have hoped in Thee, be not angry with us greatly, neither remember our iniquities; but look upon us now as Thou art compassionate, and deliver us from our enemies, for Thou art our God, and we, Thy people; all are the works of Thy hands, and we call upon Thy name.
Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.
The door of compassion open unto us, O blessed Theotokos, for, hoping in thee, let us not perish; through thee may we be delivered from adversities, for thou art the salvation of the Christian race.
Lord, have mercy. (Twelve times)
Prayer 1, of Macarius the Great
O Eternal God and King of all creation, Who hast granted me to reach this hour, forgive the sins I have committed this day in deed, word, and thought; and cleanse, O Lord, my humble soul of all impurity of flesh and spirit, and grant me, O Lord, to pass the sleep of this night in peace; that, rising from my lowly bed, I may please Thy most holy name all the days of my life, and thwart the enemies, fleshly and bodiless, that war against me. And deliver me, O Lord, from vain thoughts and evil desires which defile me. For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory: of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.
Prayer 2, of St. Antiochus
O Ruler of all, Word of the Father, O Jesus Christ, Thou Who are perfect: For the sake of the plenitude of Thy mercy, never depart from me, but always remain in me, Thy servant. O Jesus, Good Shepherd of Thy sheep, deliver me not over to the sedition of the serpent, and leave me not to the will of Satan, for the seed of corruption is in me. But do Thou, O Lord, Who is worshipped God, holy King, Jesus Christ, guard me as I sleep by the Unwaning Light, Thy Holy Spirit, by Whom Thou didst sanctify Thy disciples. O Lord, grant me, Thine unworthy servant, Thy salvation upon my bed. Enlighten my mind with the light of understanding of Thy Holy Gospel; my soul, with the love of Thy Cross; my heart, with the purity of Thy word; my body, with Thy passionless Passion. Keep my thought in Thy humility, and raise me up at the proper time for Thy glorification. For most glorified art Thou together with Thine unoriginate Father, and the Most Holy Spirit, unto the ages. Amen.
Prayer 3, to the Holy Spirit
O Lord, Heavenly King, Comforter, Spirit of Truth, show compassion and have mercy on me Thy sinful servant, and loose me from mine unworthiness, and forgive all wherein I have sinned against Thee today as a man, and not only as a man, but even worse than a beast, my sins voluntary and involuntary, known and unknown, whether from youth, and from evil suggestion, or whether from brazenness and despondency. If I have sworn by Thy name, or blasphemed it in my thought; or grieved anyone, or have become angry about anything; or have lied, or slept needlessly, or if a beggar hath come to me and I disdained him; or if I have grieved my brother, or have quarreled, or have condemned anyone; or if I have been boastful, or prideful, or angry; if, as I stood at prayer, my mind hath been distracted by the wiles of this world, or by thoughts of depravity; if I have over-eaten, or have drunk excessively, or laughed frivolously; if I have thought evil, or seen the beauty of another and been wounded thereby in my heart; if I have said improper things, or derided my brother’s sin when mine own sins are countless; if I have been neglectful of prayer, or have done some other wrong that I do not remember, for all of this and more than this have I done: have mercy, O Master my Creator, on me Thy downcast and unworthy servant, and loose me, and remit, and forgive me, for Thou art good and the Lover of mankind, so that, lustful, sinful, and wretched as I am, I may lie down and sleep and rest in peace. And I shall worship, and hymn, and glorify Thy most honourable name, together with the Father and His Only-begotten Son, now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.
Prayer 4, of St. Macarius the Great
What shall I offer Thee, or what shall I give Thee, O greatly-gifted, immortal King, O compassionate Lord Who lovest mankind? For though I have been slothful in pleasing Thee, and have done nothing good, Thou hast led me to the close of this day that is past, establishing the conversion and salvation of my soul. Be merciful to me a sinner, bereft of every good deed, raise up my fallen soul which hath become defiled by countless sins, and take away from me every evil thought of this visible life. Forgive my sins, O Only Sinless One, in which I have sinned against Thee this day, known or unknown, in word, and deed, and thought, and in all my senses. Do Thou Thyself protect and guard me from every opposing circumstance, by Thy Divine authority and power and inexpressible love for mankind. Blot out, O God, blot out the multitude of my sins. Be pleased, O Lord, to deliver me from the net of the evil one, and save my passionate soul, and overshadow me with the light of Thy countenance when Thou shalt come in glory; and cause me, uncondemned now, to sleep a dreamless sleep, and keep Thy servant untroubled by thoughts, and drive away from me all satanic deeds; and enlighten for me the eyes of my heart with understanding, lest I sleep unto death. And send me an angel of peace, a guardian and guide of my soul and body, that he may deliver me from mine enemies; that, rising from my bed, I may offer Thee prayers of thanksgiving. Yea, O Lord, hearken unto me, Thy sinful and wretched servant, in confession and conscience; grant me, when I arise, to be instructed by Thy sayings; and through Thine angels cause demonic despondency to be driven far from me: that I may bless Thy holy name, and glorify and extol the most pure Theotokos Mary, whom Thou hast given to us sinners as a protectress, and accept her who prayeth for us. For I know that she exemplifieth Thy love for mankind and prayeth for us without ceasing. Through her protection, and the sign of the precious Cross, and for the sake of all Thy saints, preserve my wre tched soul, O Jesus Christ our God: for holy art Thou, and most glorious forever. Amen.
O Lord our God, as Thou art good and the Lover of mankind, forgive me wherein I have sinned today in word, deed and thought. Grant me peaceful and undisturbed sleep; send Thy guardian angel to protect and keep me from all evil. For Thou art the Guardian of our souls and bodies, and unto Thee do we send up glory: to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.
O Lord our God, in Whom we believe and Whose name we invoke above every name, grant us, as we go to sleep, relaxation of soul and body, and keep us from all dreams and dark pleasures; stop the onslaught of the passions and quench the burnings that arise in the flesh. Grant us to live chastely in deed and word, that we may obtain a virtuous life, and not fall away from Thy promised blessings; for blessed art Thou forever. Amen.
Prayer 7, of St. John Chrysostom
(24 prayers according to the number of hours of day and night)
1O Lord, deprive me not of Thy heavenly good things. 2O Lord, deliver me from eternal torments. 3O Lord, if I have sinned in mind or thought, in word or deed, forgive me. 4O Lord, deliver me from all ignorance, forgetfulness, faint-heartedness, and stony insensibility. 5O Lord, deliver me from every temptation. 6O Lord, enlighten my heart which evil desire hath darkened. 7O Lord, as a man I have sinned, but do Thou, as the compassionate God, have mercy on me, seeing the infirmity of my soul. 😯 Lord, send Thy grace to my aid, that I may glorify Thy holy name. 9O Lord Jesus Christ, inscribe me Thy servant in the Book of Life, and grant me a good end. 10O Lord my God, even though I have done nothing good in Thy sight, yet grant me by Thy grace to make a good beginning. 11O Lord, sprinkle into my heart the dew of Thy grace. 12O Lord of heaven and earth, remember me Thy sinful servant, shameful and unclean, in Thy kingdom. Amen.
1O Lord, accept me in repentance. 2O Lord, forsake me not. 3O Lord, lead me not into temptation. 4O Lord, grant me good thoughts. 5O Lord, grant me tears, remembrance of death, and compunction. 6O Lord, grant me the thought of confessing my sins. 7O Lord, grant me humility, chastity, and obedience. 😯 Lord, grant me patience, courage, and meekness. 9O Lord, implant in me the root of good, Thy fear in my heart. 10O Lord, vouchsafe me to love Thee with all my soul and mind, and in all things to do Thy will. 11O Lord, protect me from evil men, demons, and passions, and from every other unseemly thing. 12O Lord, I know that Thou doest as Thou wilt: Thy will be done also in me a sinner; for blessed art Thou unto the ages. Amen.
Prayer 8, to our Lord Jesus Christ
O Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, for the sake of Thy most honourable Mother, and Thy bodiless angels, Thy Prophet and Forerunner and Baptist, the God-inspired apostles, the radiant and victorious martyrs, the holy and God-bearing fathers, and through the intercessions of all the saints, deliver me from the besetting presence of the demons. Yea, my Lord and Creator, Who desirest not the death of a sinner, but rather that he be converted and live, grant conversion also to me, wretched and unworthy; rescue me from the mouth of the pernicious serpent, who is yawning to devour me and take me down to hades alive. Yea, my Lord, my Comfort, Who for my miserable sake wast clothed in corruptible flesh, draw me out of misery, and grant comfort to my miserable soul. Implant in my heart to fulfill Thy commandments, and to forsake evil deeds, and to obtain Thy blessings; for in Thee, O Lord, have I hoped, save me.
Prayer 9, to the Most Holy Theotokos
O good Mother of the Good King, most pure and blessed Theotokos Mary, do thou pour out the mercy of thy Son and our God upon my passionate soul, and by thine intercessions guide me unto good works, that I may pass the remaining time of my life without blemish, and attain paradise through thee, O Virgin Theotokos, who alone art pure and blessed.
Prayer 10, to the Holy Guardian Angel
O Angel of Christ, my holy guardian and protector of my soul and body, forgive me all wherein I have sinned this day, and deliver me from all opposing evil of mine enemy, lest I anger my God by any sin. Pray for me, a sinful and unworthy servant, that thou mayest show me forth worthy of the kindness and mercy of the All-holy Trinity, and of the Mother of my Lord Jesus Christ, and all the saints. Amen.
Kontakion to the Theotokos, Tone 8
To thee, the Champion Leader, we thy servants dedicate a feast of victory and of thanksgiving as ones rescued out of sufferings, O Theotokos; but as thou art one with might which is invincible, from all dangers that can be do thou deliver us, that we may cry to thee: Rejoice, thou Bride Unwedded! Most glorious, Ever-Virgin, Mother of Christ God, present our prayer to thy Son and our God, that through thee He may save our souls. All my hope I place in thee, O Mother of God: keep me under thy protection. O Virgin Theotokos, disdain not me a sinner, needing thy help and thy protection, and have mercy on me, for my soul hath hoped in thee.
My hope is the Father, my refuge is the Son, my protection is the Holy Spirit: O Holy Trinity, glory to Thee.
Hymn to the Most Holy Theotokos, Tone 8
It is truly meet to bless thee, the Theotokos, ever-blessed and most blameless and Mother of our God. More honorable than the Cherubim, and beyond compare more glorious than the Seraphim, who without corruption gavest birth to God the Word, the very Theotokos, thee do we magnify.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.
Lord, have mercy. (Thrice)
O Lord, bless.
O Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, for the sake of the prayers of Thy most pure Mother, our holy and God-bearing fathers and all the saints, have mercy on us. Amen.
Prayer of Saint John Damascene, which is to be said while pointing at thy bed
O Master, Lover of mankind, is this bed to be my coffin, or wilt Thou enlighten my wretched soul with another day? Behold, the coffin lieth before me; behold, death confronteth me. I fear, O Lord, Thy judgment and the endless torments, yet I cease not to do evil. My Lord God, I continually anger Thee, and Thy most pure Mother, and all the Heavenly Hosts, and my Holy Guardian Angel. I know, O Lord, that I am unworthy of Thy love for mankind, but am worthy of every condemnation and torment. But, O Lord, whether I will it or not, save me. For to save a righteous man is no great thing, and to have mercy on the pure is nothing wonderful, for they are worthy of Thy mercy. But on me a sinner, show the wonder of Thy mercy; in this reveal Thy love for mankind, lest my wickedness prevail over Thine ineffable goodness and merciful kindness; and order my life as Thou wilt.
And when about to lie down in bed, say this:
Enlighten mine eyes, O Christ God, lest at any time I sleep unto death, lest at any time mine enemy say: I have prevailed against him.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
Be my soul’s helper, O God, for I pass through the midst of many snares; deliver me out of them and save me, O Good One, for Thou art the Lover of mankind.
Both now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.
The most glorious Mother of God, more holy than the holy angels, let us hymn unceasingly with our hearts and mouths, confessing her to be the Theotokos, for truly she gaveth birth to God incarnate for us, and prayeth unceasingly for our souls.
Then kiss thy Cross, and make the sign of the Cross from the head to the foot of the bed, and likewise from side to side, while saying:
The Prayer to the Precious Cross
Let God arise and let His enemies be scattered, and let them that hate Him flee from before His face. As smoke vanisheth, so let them vanish; as wax melteth before the fire, so let the demons perish from the presence of them that love God and who sign themselves with the sign of the Cross and say in gladness: Rejoice, most precious and life-giving Cross of the Lord, for Thou drivest away the demons by the power of our Lord Jesus Christ Who was crucified on thee, Who went down to hades and trampled on the power of the devil, and gave us thee, His precious Cross, for the driving away of every adversary. O most precious and life-giving Cross of the Lord, help me together with the holy Lady Virgin Theotokos, and with all the saints, unto the ages. Amen.
Compass me about, O Lord, with the power of Thy precious and life-giving Cross and preserve me from every evil.
Then, in lieu of asking forgiveness of others:
Remit, pardon, forgive, O God, our offenses, both voluntary and involuntary, in deed and word, in knowledge and ignorance, by day or by night, in mind and thought; forgive us all things, for Thou art good and the Lover of mankind.
O Lord, Lover of mankind, forgive them that hate and wrong us. Do good to them that do good. Grant our brethren and kindred their saving petitions and life eternal; visit the infirm and grant them healing. Guide those at sea. Journey with them that travel. Help Orthodox Christians to struggle. To them that serve and are kind to us grant remission of sins. On them that have charged us, the unworthy, to pray for them, have mercy according to Thy great mercy. Remember, O Lord, our fathers and brethren departed before us, and grant them rest where the light of Thy countenance shall visit them. Remember, O Lord, our brethren in captivity, and deliver them from every misfortune. Remember, O Lord, those that bear fruit and do good works in Thy holy churches, and grant them their saving petitions and life eternal. Remember also, O Lord, us Thy lowly and sinful and unworthy servants, and enlighten our minds with the light of Thy knowledge, and guide us in the way of Thy commandments; through the intercessions of our most pure Lady, the Theotokos and Ever-Virgin Mary, and of all Thy saints, for blessed art Thou unto the ages of ages. Amen.
Daily Confession of Sins
I confess to Thee, my Lord God and Creator, in one Holy Trinity glorified and worshipped, to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, all my sins which I have committed in all the days of my life, and at every hour, at the present time and in the past, day and night, by deed, word, thought, gluttony, drunkenness, secret eating, idle talking, despondency, indolence, contradiction, disobedience, slandering, condemning, negligence, self-love, acquisitiveness, extortion, lying, dishonesty, mercenariness, jealousy, envy, anger, remembrance of wrongs, hatred, bribery; and by all my senses: sight, hearing, smell, taste, touch; and by the rest of my sins, of the soul together with the bodily, through which I have angered Thee, my God and Creator, and dealt unjustly with my neighbour. Sorrowing for these, I stand guilty before Thee, my God, but I have the will to repent. Only help me, O Lord my God, with tears I humbly entreat Thee. Forgive my past sins through Thy compassion, and absolve from all these which I have s aid in Thy presence, for Thou art good and the Lover of mankind.
At the time of sleep, say:
Into Thy hands, O Lord Jesus Christ my God, I commit my spirit. Do Thou bless me, do Thou have mercy on me, and grant me life eternal. Amen.
Ending your day with prayer is a wonderful way to let go of stress and find peace before falling asleep. No matter what you faced today, talking to God through goodnight prayers will renew your faith. Evening prayer also helps you see all the good things that happened in your day that you have to be thankful for!
Share these nine bedtime and evening prayers with your children, spouse and friends so they too can fall asleep feeling blessed and thankful!
Goodnight Prayer for Blessings
Bless us with rest tonight, Jesus, and a good night’s sleep. Forgive us for the things we did today that did not honor you. Thank you for loving us so much and that you know us through and through. We need your help every day, and we thank you for the strength you give and for helping us know that with you, even hard things are possible. Bless our family and our home, and keep us safe through the night. May your angels guard us and watch over us, just like you promised.
You’ve told us we are just like sheep. And that you lead us and guard us like a shepherd. You know our names, and you make us feel special and loved. When we hurt, you help us feel better. Thank you, Jesus, for your good care and for giving us to help. Thank you for the Bible, and for teaching us stuff in life that helps us grow. Bless the people in our world, and help them to know you love them, too. Thank you for all the people who help us so much: teachers, doctors, policeman, and fireman—and so many more.
Thank you for your good plan for our lives. Help us to obey you and love you more and more. When we awake in the morning, put a smile on our face and your purpose in our hearts, ready to start a new day. We love you, Jesus. Good night. In Jesus’s precious name, Amen. ~ ~ Rebecca Barlow Jordan
A Bedtime Prayer to Stop an Anxious Heart
Dear Lord, please help me trust You and empower me through Your Spirit to stop my emotions from bossing me around. I want to quit worrying about what might happen and focus on what has already happened by remembering and praising You for Your faithfulness in my life. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. ~ Renee Swoop
Giving Thanks Evening Prayer
Dear God, we thank you tonight for the good day and for the special way you take care of us all the time. Thank you for the fun times outside and the quiet times inside, and for helping us learn new things every day.
Thank you for creating us special, exactly the way you wanted. Thank you for protecting us throughout the day. Forgive us for the wrong things we do. Thank you for loving us even when we disobey or try to do things our way. Help us to always choose your way, God, because it’s always best. We pray for all the people who don’t know you, and that they will come to understand your love for them, too.
Bless our family and thank you for good times together and apart. Bless our friends and those we love, including our grandparents, our aunts and uncles and cousins. Thank you for our home and a place to sleep and good food to eat. Help us rest well, give us peaceful dreams, and send your angels around our home to protect us throughout the night. Teach us to trust you and to love you more and more. You are good; you are great; and you are faithful, God. And we love you. Good night. In Jesus’s precious name, Amen. ~ Rebecca Barlow Jordan
A Short Night-time Prayer (2 Timothy 1:7)
For God’s not given me a spirit of fear,
But a spirit of love,
and of power, and a sound mind,
To live each day and glorify his name.
Popular Child’s Bedtime Prayer, 18th Century
Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep.
If I should die before I wake,
I pray the Lord my soul to take.
Alternative Version for Children:
Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep,
Watch and guard me through the night,
and wake me with the morning light.
A Beautiful Prayer to End the Day
Heavenly Father, my day is drawing to an end, and I’m ready to turn in. But before I do, I have to thank you for your faithfulness today. It’s always a good day, even when things may not go the way I plan, or when the world seems in chaos, because you are in control.
For all the times when I was aware of your help today, all the times when your unseen presence seemed so near, thank you, God. But for all the ways you worked behind the scenes, unknown to me, moments when heaven-sent angels moved on my behalf in ways I’ll never know, thank you for those also, Lord.
Forgive me for any foolish actions on my part today or things I did without first asking your blessing or wisdom. Those are moments I’d rather forget, but I’m so grateful for your forgiveness when I ask. I never want to go to bed without clearing the air between us, Lord. Our friendship means too much, and your holiness deserves that. Thank you for loving me just as I am. Your love compels me to give you my all and fills my heart with praise for the relationship we share because of Jesus.
As I close my eyes tonight, I’m praying for loved ones around me, for friends and those who need to know you, Lord. I’m praying that your love, like the billions of stars in the night sky outside, will touch them and help them see who you really are. I pray for our world and those in it. I pray for their needs as well as my own.
Grant me a good night’s sleep tonight, God, so that I can awake refreshed and ready to begin another day loving you. Thank you again for blessings so undeserved and too numerous to count. I love being your child, and I long for the word “faithful” to describe my service to you, each day of every year. When I awake in the morning, may it be with a joyful smile, not a grumpy spirit. May your protection and your presence bathe this place with peace and safety against the enemy. Good night, Lord. In Jesus’s name, Amen. ~ Rebecca Barlow Jordan
Father, We Thank Thee
Father, we thank thee for the night,
And for the pleasant morning light;
For rest and food and loving care,
And all that makes the day so fair.
Help us to do the things we should,
To be to others kind and good;
In all we do, in work or play,
To grow more loving every day.
— Rebecca Weston – 1890
Bedtime Prayer (song by Twila Paris)
Now I lay me down to sleep
I pray dear Lord that you will keep
Your eyes upon this sleeping world
Every little boy and girl
Bless the children far away
The ones who don’t know how to pray
Those who are not feeling well
The little one the slipped and fell
Bless the puppy down the street
The neighbors I have yet to meet
Bless my mom and dad especially
Just one more thing I’d like to say
Before I close another day
I’d like to thank you Lord for all the ways
That You bless me
Bless the child whose home is torn
The babies who are not yet born
Bless the ones who take your word
To all the hearts that have not heard
Bless all your children everywhere
I hope they know how much you care
Maybe someday I can go
And tell them that You love them so
Bless Grandma and my Grandpa too
And all my friend and all they do
Bless every twig upon my family tree
Just one more thing I’ll say to you
I’m so amazed by all you do
I’ll thank you once again because it’s true
That you bless me
The Examen (Evening Reflection)
Written by St. Ignatius Loyola, the Examen is a daily process for prayerfully reflecting on your day.
1. Remember God’s presence.
Even after a trying day, God will quiet your soul as you remember His presence and intentionally seek to enter into it. Remember He’s with you. Invite Him to make Himself present to you.
2. Respond to Him with thanks.
Giving thanks gives God glory and helps us look on the bright side of a bad day. What small blessings can you thank God for?
3. Reflect on how God showed Himself to you.
God reveals himself through scripture, but we also see glimpses of him in nature, events, and people. Sometimes He shows up loudly through miraculous, divine intervention. Other times He shows Himself quietly through the beauty of a flower or an earnest conversation. As you look back over your day, can you identify moments where you sensed God’s revelation or intervention?
4. Repent of your failings.
I don’t like recognizing my own sin, but repentance is key to continual renewal in our relationship with God.As you reflect on your day, remember specific points where you failed. Bring your shortcomings before God and ask Him to forgive you.
5. Resolve to grow.
God is in the business of changing us, so don’t let your failings discourage or define you. His mercies are always new. Accept His forgiveness. Ask Him for grace to change. Is there anything you need to make right or anyone you need to apologize to? What can you do differently tomorrow?
Do you have a favorite goodnight prayer you use at bedtime? One that your parents taught you or that you are teaching your children? Share it with our community in the comments below!
This article is part of our larger Prayers resource meant to inspire and encourage your prayer life when you face uncertain times. Visit our most popular prayers if you are wondering how to pray or what to pray. Remember, the Holy Spirit intercedes for us and God knows your heart even if you can’t find the words to pray.
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