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).
Today’s first reading is a lengthy one for sure, but, I think when you shrink it down to its fundamental theme, its point is rather simple. I take it to mean something along the lines of “life is meaningless”. The author seems to be making the assertion that nothing we do matters. Does that sound dismal and sad? Well, it’s not meant to be. While it’s true the writer is making these statements, we need to realize that he is declaring them from the point of view of our earthly lives, not our spiritual or heavenly lives.
To say it another way, the truth is that our lives ARE meaningless… without God. That is the most important takeaway. The Baltimore Catechism answers the question “Why did God make me?” with the answer “God made me to know Him, to love Him and to serve Him in this world, and to be happy with Him in the next”. Think about that. If God created us for those reasons, then it makes perfect sense that a life lived without Him could not possibly realize the true meaning of its own creation.
So, there is a very real reason why we are all alive, and it’s got nothing to do with what we have, what we do, or how much we achieve. If God is not a part of all these things, they are fruitless. We should all keep this in mind as we go about the business of our lives. God desires to be at the center of each of our worlds. Let's be sure to keep Him there, so that He can give us a truly meaningful life of abundance.
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.
When do you feel like what you are doing is meaningless? Have you ever felt like you efforts are futile?
Do you invite God into your daily life? Even into the mundane activities of your day? How does He change the meaning of or motivation behind your actions?
How does knowing that you are made out of love for love change the way you see the meaning of your life here on earth?
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 need You."
"Help me know You."
"I love 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?
During the month of September, we ask that each day, for the Action step of our lectio divina, everyone prays a Divine Mercy Chaplet together for the healing of all victims of clerical abuse of any kind as well as for the healing and guidance of our Church.
For more information on why we are doing this action step and a simple lock screen or how to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet, click here.
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 Jim Lundgren, a parishioner at St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church in Crystal Lake, IL.
If you have anything you'd like our team to pray for, please go to the page of our website called "Prayers" and let us know how we can pray for you today.