If you have stayed with the daily schedule, then you are almost one week into the Exercises. Here is the next set of topics for days eight through fourteen (Dec. 8-14). If you are off schedule, as are some of our family, just pick up the next exercise and finish in January, or whenever you finish.
I think I understand why St. Ignatius originally set this up as an all-day-every-day-for-30-days method. I've found that I want two or three days to ponder each topic, so the pace is a little quick. That said, I do like that after spending several days thinking about Christ, we are now transitioning into evaluating our own standing before and with our Savior. I especially look forward to Days 12, 13, and 14 this week. Those are Exercises that take years to get a handle on, let alone mastering.
And now, for the next week of exercises:
Question: What is really happening when I take the sacrament?
Read: John 6:54 and 1 Corinthians 11:26
Ponder: What promises have I made to Christ? How will my life change if I truly take on His name?
Question: How do I guard against pride?
Read: Proverbs 6:16-17 and 8:13
Ponder: Am I being truly honest with myself? With others? Do I do the right things for the right reasons?
Question: Whom can I serve?
Read: Joshua 24:15 and Galatians 5:13
Ponder: Am I overlooking family members or friends in order to serve in my church or my community? Or, am I too focused on family and not offering my skills to a wider community? What answers do I get when I pray to the Lord about this?
Question: How do I control physical passions or addictions?
Read: 1 Corinthians 10:6 and 2 Timothy 2:21-22
Ponder: How can I take my Savior's hand and rise to set a righteous example for others who also struggle? How can I build a spiritual network of support when I am tempted?
Question: How can I stay in a grateful frame of mind for my many blessings for just one week?
Read: 2 Corinthians 9:15 and Ephesians 5:20
Ponder: What ten things would I list as the most important blessings I have received from my Savior?
Question: How can I elevate my thoughts? Find a mountain of dispassion to climb and rest upon?
Read: Psalm 119:99 and Exodus 26:30, 34
Ponder: Do I really want to work to keep all idle, unclear, or negative thoughts out of my mind? Am I willing to discipline myself to practice meditation techniques to rid myself of these?
Question: How can I withdraw my negative projections from individuals and institutions so that I do not gossip or think negative thoughts about them?
Read: Matthew 5:11 and Proverbs 21:23
Ponder: Do I project onto the world my own unfinished or unresolved issues? What can I do to work on them? Can mediation help with the detachment necessary to accomplish this task? Should I get counseling help to accomplish this?