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  • James Kennedy, SJ

The Meditation on the Incarnation



The Meditation on the Incarnation comes from the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius. The meditation asks us to look at the world with God. We are invited to see the world as it really is: a mix of good and bad, of people loving each other and of people hurting each other. We then understand that God desires to save this world and bring all people into the love of God’s Kingdom. To bring this kingdom into reality, God sent Jesus into the world to become like us in order to redeem the world. As a result, we see that our sins and limitations are not the last word.


  1. Begin by asking God for what you desire: here, it is for knowledge of God, who became human for me, so that I may love Jesus more deeply and follow him more closely.

  2. Survey the matter: the purpose of this meditation is for us to consider that God so loved the world that Jesus came into the world so that we might have life and have it more abundantly. We are invited to see that God loves the world in spite of our problems and desires to save the world anyway. Then, contemplate the Annunciation, when the Archangel Gabriel appeared to Mary and asked her to be the Mother of God.

  3. Compose the scene: imagine God from eternity looking down on the world in each moment, seeing people in all places living life in all their joys and hopes, griefs and anxieties. When you look down at the world, what do you see? What is happening in all corners of the world? What good is happening? What bad is happening? Then, knowing that God sees all that you see and more, reflect on the world as you see it.

  4. Then, imagine especially God looking down on your life in all your joy and hope, grief and anxiety. What do you see? What is happening in all corners of your life? What good is happening? What bad is happening? Then, knowing that God sees all that you see and more, reflect on your life as you see it.

  5. Taking all that you see in the world and in your life alongside God, you hear Jesus speak these words: “Father, let me become flesh and dwell among your people to bring them life.” Then, you see Gabriel speaking to Mary and asking her to become the Mother of God. You hear Mary say yes to God’s plan.

  6. Review all that you have seen and heard. Speak to God about whatever seems best to you, asking God for whatever grace you seek or thanking God for the gift of the Incarnation. Listen quietly to what God has to say to you.

  7. Conclude the meditation with an “Our Father.”


If you find it helpful, linked below is an audio recording of the Meditation that you can use as a guide. To open it, click on the file. This will download it from this post to your computer. Then, find where your downloaded files are located on your computer (sometimes you will see it at the bottom of your internet browser, other times you will need to open "My Computer" or "Finder" on your computer and navigate to the "Downloads" folder). Then simply double click to open the file and it should open on an app on your computer. If you have questions, please feel free to email to ask!


Meditation on Incarnation
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