Step #1: Lectio / Read
Click the link below or open your Bible to the passage and read through the reading at least once, paying attention to what is happening in the text.
Step #2: Meditatio / Meditate
Use the following meditation to help you reflect more deeply on the Scripture (you may want to read the passage again).
Have you ever seen a Redwood coastal or a Giant sequoia tree? I just got back from California where these trees grow in massive forests and their size takes your breath away! I saw the biggest giant sequoia tree and it is 275 ft tall and 2,700 years old. I mention this because although they are just trees their vastness is so great it humbles anyone in their shade. That's sort of like the genius of the Gospel today!
In today's Gospel we hear the genealogy of Jesus. Have you ever wondered about the people in your family tree? Another tree that in the sight of its greatness you can begin to feel small and humbled. Our family tree can teach us a lot and it's important to know your family history. It brings a depth and richness to who you are and who you can become!
I have to admit there are times when this Gospel is being read, and I have sighed and thought, "What the heck does this have to do with me?" It can be really easy to tune out a reading that rattles off a bunch of names.
Recently, I heard that the genealogy of Jesus is really important because it's our family history too! By our very baptism we are brothers and sisters of Jesus, so knowing where He comes from is knowing where we come from! This Advent is an opportunity to delve into the depth of who you are in Jesus Christ. Jesus is asking us to be rooted in Him and connect to our faith family in more meaningful way.
I mentioned in the beginning that those giant trees made me feel small and humbled, in the face of this family tree of Jesus I actually feel the opposite. I feel a deep abiding love of God reaching through each name that is spoken out loud. It is a love that would patiently wait generations to bring about His son Jesus for love of me and you! How great is His love for us!
Step #3: Oratio / Pray
These questions are to be used to talk to God; have a conversation with the Lord about these questions and what is going on in your heart as you pray today.
Do you know about your earthly family tree? Who are some of the people in your family that you look up to and are role models for you?
What do you know about your heavenly family tree? Do you know about your brothers and sisters in Christ? How can you learn about them more?
What do your earthly family and your heavely family show you about God's love?
Step #4: Contemplatio / Contemplate
In this step, you listen. Stop talking, let God speak to your heart. You may repeat one of these short phrases to focus your mind on the Lord.
"I am a child of God."
"I am loved."
"How He loves us."
Step #5: Actio / Act
In light of today's reading and your time spent in prayer with the Lord, what concrete action or actions will you take to let this encounter with Lord bear fruit in you today?
Today, pray for each member of your family. Both your heavenly family and your earthly family. Try to do one action for someone in your family to show them God's love. Do the dishes for your mom, help your sister with her homework or do a chore without being asked.
Smartphone Lock Screen
The following image is here for you to save and use as a background or lock screen on your smartphone or device to help you carry today's Lectio Divina with you the rest of the day.
Today's reflection was prepared by Sr. Faustina Ferko is a Sister of the Holy Family of Nazareth and minister at St James in Arlington Heights, IL..