Step #1: Lectio / Read
The word of God continued to spread and grow.
After Barnabas and Saul completed their relief mission,
they returned to Jerusalem,
taking with them John, who is called Mark.
Now there were in the Church at Antioch prophets and teachers:
Barnabas, Symeon who was called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene,
Manaen who was a close friend of Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.
While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said,
“Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul
for the work to which I have called them.”
Then, completing their fasting and prayer,
they laid hands on them and sent them off.
So they, sent forth by the Holy Spirit,
went down to Seleucia
and from there sailed to Cyprus.
When they arrived in Salamis,
they proclaimed the word of God in the Jewish synagogues.
Step #2: Meditatio / Meditate
If there is one thing that we can all agree on is that we all love food! Honestly, it is the center of our entire social lives. It is where we gather to get to know each other and share experiences. Just last weekend I went to eat all- you- can- eat sushi and regrettably ate 33 pieces. #badlifechoices. But if there is one thing I truly enjoy it's Lou Malnati's deep dish pizza. I truly mean this! I even once drove 30 minutes in a snow storm to get myself a personal pan pepperoni only to find myself disappointed after I was finished that I didn't go big and buy myself the large.
Each time someone brings up where to eat I seem to want that savory pizza and in fact, anytime people debate where the best Chicago pizza is I am always ready to stand up for my buddy Lou.
You see it's interesting at the drop of hat I am ready to defend my love for Lou Malnati's deep dish and I am always ready to tell people how much they will enjoy eating that pizza, and that it is totally worth the time and money.
Yet, I wonder at times if I am always ready to share my love of pizza more than I am ready to share the love I have for Christ. I am never afraid of people's judgement on my food choice, yet I am afraid of people's judgement on what I believe.
We are all ready to share with others our favorite restaurant or to debate our favorite movie. In fact, because we love our favorite food or love our favorite movie we want others to know that love too. So shouldn't we also want others to know the savory taste of the Gospel.
That is our call today from the Lord. The word of God must continue to grow and so we have been set apart to preach that Good News! It is nothing to fear, nothing to be shy about. All we have to do is grow in love with Christ and His Church and the love of God will enliven our spiritual taste buds that lie deep in our souls. Allow the Lord to love you and as you experience His love you will want nothing more then each person you meet to know the same love that you do!
Step #3: Oratio / Pray
Lord, do I recognize that I have been set apart to spread your Good News?
Lord, how can I fall deeper in love with you today?
Lord, who are the Barnabas and Saul in my life? Who are my companions who will support me in this mission?
Step #4: Contemplatio / Contemplate
"Lord you are my Father. Let me experience your love today so that noone doubts that I have a Father who loves me."
"Lord, I am yours, I am your beloved child."
"I am sent by the God of the universe to preach to all I meet."
For the Rest of Your Day...
Go to a store today (or sometime soon) like Walgreens and as you are being checked out say to the cashier, "Today someone challenged me to find a random person to pray for so is there anything I can pray for you later when I get home?" Might be a little scary, but the worst they say is "No, I'm fine" then you just respond, "No problem, I'll just pray that you have a good day today."
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Today's prayer was prepared by Deacon Kyle A. Manno.