In today’s first reading Baruch three times characterizes sin as not listening to the voice of God. Ignatian spirituality is based on the conviction that God speaks to his people, not just through the Church, but to each individual, on retreats, in prayer, and throughout the day. The daily Ignatian prayer called the Examen helps us become ever more aware of God’s voice.

We don’t always listen. Perhaps we doubt an infinite ocean could desire to speak to a drop of water.  Perhaps we fear what God might say.  Perhaps we prefer to do things our way rather than God’s.

But if we try to listen, we’ll hear. If we respond to his words, our hearing will improve.  If we ignore his words, eventually we’ll grow deaf. Jesus said that his sheep recognize his voice, listen to it and follow him.  Can we hear him speaking to us this day?

—Fr. Peter Fennessy, S.J. is a retreat director and spiritual counselor at Manresa Jesuit Retreat House, Bloomfield Hills, MI.