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).
This term brings the almost inevitable sense of anxiety; a reminder of the pressure we all face everyday. Perfection is the thing that drives so many of us almost crazy as we try to do literally everything. Perfection is the bar to which we measure everything, yet is literally impossible for us to reach. But God knows that right? That’s why He constantly tells us to “not worry” and “have no anxiety” throughout Scripture. Why, then, does He tell us to be perfect, especially perfect “as your heavenly Father is perfect”?
I think the important thing to remember is that Jesus is talking all about love here. He is not talking about school or sports or band. The perfection Jesus is calling us to actually has nothing to do with our skills or abilities. He calls us to love perfectly. Obviously we are not too good at that either, but it is not a matter of how good we are. Our ability to love is a direct reflection of how much we let God love us. To be perfect, as Jesus is calling us to be, is all about letting Him love us and then sharing that love with others. It literally has nothing to do with us or what we can or can’t do well. Being perfect is about letting God’s love guide our actions.
So let’s stop trying to be perfect according to the world’s standards. That type of “perfection” really is impossible, because that is not what you are made for. Heavenly perfection isn’t easy, but it is the mark of every saint and is literally who you were created to be. Be perfectly you, be perfected by love.
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.
In what areas of your life are you striving for perfection?
How do you allow God's love to guide your actions?
How can you strive to love more perfectly and be a reflection of 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.
"Be perfectly you."
"Be perfected by love."
"Let God's love guide you."
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 the Lord bear fruit in you today?
Seek to be a vessel of God's love to the world today.
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 prayer was prepared by Sean Norris, Youth Minister at Our Lady of the Wayside Parish in Arlington Heights, IL.