Keeping Our Eyes Fixed

A Lesson in Prayer from St. Teresa of Avila

Keeping Our Eyes Fixed

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O Lord, how true that all harm comes to us from not keeping our eyes fixed on You. . . . We meet with a thousand falls and obstacles and lose the way because we don’t keep our eyes . . . on the true way. (The Way of Perfection, 16.11)

The mindfulness of Christ’s presence nurtured in times of prayer flows out into daily life, strengthening our desire to live more consciously in the presence of Jesus in every aspect of our lives. In other words, we grow in our trust that he walks at our side and supports us whether we are in times of quiet or crisis.

For Teresa [of Avila], to pray unceasingly does not involve applying a conventional form of prayer to our daily lives but of attuning ourselves to our heart’s deepest desire and allowing it to surface into consciousness throughout the day. Teresa asks only that we turn away from our preoccupations for a moment and give our attention to Christ and glance in his direction. Eventually, our gaze will become more consistent and our listening to the divine will be more sensitive, even…

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