Leg and hip wounds from a cannonball led to the psychic conversion of an arrogant Basque mercenary. His name was Ignatius of Loyola (1491-1556), Catholic priest and teacher, theologian, and co-founder of the Company of Jesus (Jesuits).

Toward the end of his life shortened by the outbreak of malaria in Rome, it is said that he composed this prayer of surrender:

Take, Lord, and receive all my liberty, my memory, my understanding, and my entire will, all I have and call my own. You have given all to me. To you, Lord, I return it. Everything is yours; do with it what you will. Give me only your love and your grace, that is enough for me.

Step III echoes this surrender of will and life to the God of my understanding: Both entail firm decision. Given my jitters with the emergence of new symptoms, for instance yesterday’s neuropathy in my feet, my will collapses. God’s love and grace are not enough: Fears like smoldering fires nip my surrender into shards. Only when leveled by emotional pain do I renew my decision and begin my day afresh. It’s all about obedience of the heart, and I’ve much to learn.

Yet, my spiritual growth deepens, and that’s all that matters. It’s the exercise that counts, messy though it is.

Note: Of special solace is the St. Louis Jesuits’ rendition of this prayer on YouTube.