Then the priests and the prophets said to the officials and to all the people, “This man deserves the sentence of death because he has prophesied against this city, as you have heard with your own ears.” Then Jeremiah spoke to all the officials and all the people, saying, “It is the Lord who sent me to prophesy against this house and this city all the words you have heard.
Now therefore amend your ways and your doings, and obey the voice of the Lord your God, and the Lord will change his mind about the disaster that he has pronounced against you. But as for me, here I am in your hands. Do with me as seems good and right to you. Only know for certain that if you put me to death, you will be bringing innocent blood upon yourselves and upon this city and its inhabitants, for in truth the Lord sent me to you to speak all these words in your ears.”
Then the officials and all the people said to the priests and the prophets, “This man does not deserve the sentence of death, for he has spoken to us in the name of the Lord our God.” But the hand of Ahikam son of Shaphan was with Jeremiah so that he was not given over into the hands of the people to be put to death.
Although he lived two millennia before St. Ignatius, the prophet Jeremiah embodies the spirit of Ignatian indifference that Ignatius encourages in each of us. He does not hold so tightly to even his own life that he is willing to change the message that God sent him to proclaim. Ignatian indifference, or detachment, doesn’t mean that we don’t care about something, but rather the openness to be able to take something up or set it aside as it helps us grow closer to God. Jeremiah knew that God was accompanying him, no matter what the princes decided would be his fate.
Is there something in your life that you are holding on to so tightly that it is preventing you from responding to an invitation from God? How can you practice indifference toward it?
—The Jesuit Prayer team
Prayer for Detachment
I beg of you, my Lord,
to remove anything which separates
me from you, and you from me.
Remove anything that makes me unworthy
of your sight, your control, your reprehension;
of your speech and conversation,
of your benevolence and love.
Cast from me every evil
that stands in the way of my seeing you,
hearing, tasting, savoring, and touching you;
fearing and being mindful of you;
knowing, trusting, loving, and possessing you;
being conscious of your presence
and, as far as may be, enjoying you.
This is what I ask for myself
and earnestly desire from you. Amen.
—St. Peter Faber, SJ
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