Contemplation & Spirituality, Examen, Worth Revisiting

Worth Revisiting: Examen-ing Wholeness

Wholeness /ˈhōlnəs/ noun
1.the state of forming a complete and harmonious whole; unity.

2.the state of being sound in mind and body. (Google;Miriam Webster)

What is wholeness in our world today? Acclaimed by wellness centers and gurus alike, we might encounter this term in promises spoken and broken. Or, perhaps as a hopeful wish to one day to be made whole. Yet, it isn’t that wholeness isn’t possible, but rather that we often are looking and going about it in the wrong way.

First, we cannot consider what it is to be made whole without examining our own brokenness. And this readily requires a standard to compare brokenness against, an understanding of that which is whole and complete. You see, this is problem so many of us encounter from the beginning. We look around ourselves and quickly settle for what we see in the world touted as wholeness.

Though each of us is created in God’s image in body and soul to be complete, mankind’s original sin having entered our world interjected our own imperfection. Through the sacrament of baptism, each of us becomes a new creation through Christ, and is invited to live a life transformed. This necessitates, however, an active participation on our part to continually surrender our will and desires for that of God’s.  And whenever we slip and fall to ask and accept forgiveness, healing and reconciliation. For the effects of sin, experienced both physically and spiritually in our lives, deter us from consistently knowing what it is to be whole.

Therefore, wholeness isn’t so much a thing ever fully acquired or achieved, but a gradual process of becoming. And just what is it that we desire to become? For, if we use the gauge of the world we will continue to be disappointed, as our measure of wholeness is itself broken. Yet, if we pause to ponder for a moment the state of perfection, unity and completeness that alone is without restriction or exception there can only be one true standard.

With God as the sole principle for wholeness, we begin to understand that our becoming is the journey of a lifetime and not one that can be undertaken without divine help. Not to say that we aren’t assisted by others, because each experience and person placed in our lives is done so with purpose. Sometimes revealing our coarse and jagged edges, and other times a witness to the goodness within.

  1. Begin by thanking God for specific gifts and offerings of the day and more general ways you feel blessed. Where has God met your need today? Where has transformation already begun, albeit in small ways, in your desire for wholeness?
  2. Silently pause to invite the Holy Spirit into the moment allowing the Spirit to guide you to consider the things you may have missed. Remember all of our brokenness expresses a yearning to become more like our Creator and can be used to illustrate where we are to grow.
  3. Review the missed opportunities. Where have you sought the counsel of the world, or yourself without seeking God’s assistance? Surrender the challenges, and reflect how inviting God into the picture could transform the situation as well as your perspective.  Keep in mind that this isn’t a time to focus negatively, but an invitation for renewal.
  4. Seek forgiveness and healing. Are there areas of brokenness in your life that God desires to heal and restore? Is this also keeping you apart from others?
  5. Pray and find hope in tomorrow.

“Holy Spirit guide my heart in its contrition to reconciliation. I understand that this is to be a new beginning in my journey to grow more like Christ Jesus, and to one day to experience true wholeness. I await the new mercies that are available in my tomorrow.”



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