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).
If I’m being completely honest, today’s Gospel is one that has always stumped me. I mean let’s look at the facts, the parable starts out with the steward (aka the head servant who handled his master’s business affairs) going off and squandering everything that his master entrusted to him. Thus his master fires him; but the steward, clearly not one to go down without a fight, pretends that he is still employed by the master, and forgives the debt of those who owed the master anything for less than what they actually owed him.
Now all of that seems reasonable enough, right? Sneaky steward gets fired, so sneaky steward attempts to make money off his master’s clients. But what gets me, every time in this parable, is that the master then praises the sneaky steward for being so clever and sneaky: “And the master commended that dishonest steward for acting prudently.” I mean, really, what’s that all about? The steward basically wastes all of the master’s money and deceives those who were indebted to him, and the master what? Offers him a high-five? It seems to me that that doesn’t make a whole lot of sense…unless there’s more to this story than initially meets the eye.
You see Jesus’s use of the character of the sneaky steward is twofold. First of all, it’s a warning. We see in the steward the frequently portrayed characteristics of the Pharisees who are so obsessed with the things of this world, especially money, that they have hardened their hearts against God.
But, shockingly enough, Jesus also uses the steward as an example. Immediately upon being removed from his position as steward, he begins to make plans for his future. What can he do to ensure that the clients he served under his master will still welcome him “into their houses” now that he has separated from his employer? It is this dedication in preparing for what is to come that makes our sneaky steward someone the Lord is inviting us to imitate.
As Christians, we are called to prepare for the coming of the Kingdom of Heaven with the same fervor and commitment that we see in the steward. We are invited to spend the time the Lord has given us in this world preparing for the next. And what an amazing invitation it is, the Lord has won for us eternal happiness! And so the question we must ask ourselves as we reflect today on the Word of God, is what are we doing to prepare for it?
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.
Have you been dishonest in your relationship with God?
Are there things of this world that you have become so obsessed with that you put them before God?
What are you doing to prepare for the coming of the Kingdom of God?
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.
"Lord, grant me prudence."
"Thy Kingdom come."
"Prepare the way."
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?
Spend some time thinking about how you would act differently if you knew the coming of the Kingdom of God would take place tomorrow.
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 Lauren Wright, an Adore Missionary and Youth Minister in Rockford, IL.