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).
There's moments in Scripture that sometimes make me pause and really think about how incredible what I'm reading is. Often it's something Jesus says or does that reminds me how remarkable it is that God became man; today, it was in the beginning of the first reading from 1 Kings. Solomon goes to pray, and begins to speak to God. And God, in the humility that only God can show us, makes a simple request: ask something of me and I will give it to you.
I really think that's a remarkable moment. It's the sort of thing I think we've dreamed of – what would we ask for if we could ask anything? Like, honestly, anything. Solomon is very wise; he asks not for riches, or power, or fame, or nice things; no, Solomon asks for an understanding heart. How remarkable is that! My mind would likely immediately drift to the new Tesla or iPhone or a million dollars or an ability to play a professional sport or something so incredibly simple and of this world that it is almost shocking to me to hear what Solomon says.
God, of course, honors it. In fact, God is particularly impressed in this case with the clarity of heart that Solomon has. In response, God gives him exactly what he asks for, and Solomon becomes known for being the wisest, most understanding king Israel ever had.
The truth of this, of course, is simple: we have a Father in heaven who loves to give good gifts. When we ask in faith, God the Father gives us exactly what we desire. Often, our issue is not that we ask too much; no, it's usually that we're not asking enough. Just as Solomon was looked at by God and asked "what do you want", each of us faces that same opportunity today and every day. When you and I wake up, begin our day in prayer, and enter into a conversation with the God of the universe, his question to us is the same: what can I do for you?
In the Gospel today, Jesus is moved with pity by the crowds who follow him. Why is he moved? The Gospel doesn't say, but it is very likely because he knows that they cannot possibly find happiness outside of him, and all he longs is to give them what they truly desire. God longs today to heal you and I, to give us freedom, and to give us all that our heart desires. The question is: how often do we open our hearts to the Lord, expressing the depths of what we long for and realizing that only he can give us the true answers we were looking for?
Today, let's open ourselves to the Father who gives every good and perfect gift and let him speak in power into our lives.
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.
What is happening in your heart and mind today that you need to express to the Lord?
In what ways is God speaking to you right now and longing to bring you healing and freedom? If you don't know, spend some time asking him and letting him show you in the quiet of your heart where he is moving!
If you were asked today by God what he could give you, what would you answer? What does that reveal about your heart? And have you ever asked God for that thing which you desire?
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.
"You are enough."
"You are the answer."
"You are Lord."
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?
Open up your calendar and look back at the last week. If you don't keep a calendar, look at a calendar (here) and mentally spend some time sketching out what you've done in the last week or few weeks. How present was God in your life? Did you spend time bringing to him your intentions and desires? Make a firm commitment – on a calendar would be best – to the places and ways you'll spend time in silence and prayer with him this week.
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 Jason Theobald, Executive Director of Carpe Verbum.
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.