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).
What makes a good preacher? A good preacher doesn't have to be a homilist or a public speaker. We have the opportunity to preach the gospel every day. Christians are meant to be Christ-bearers. We bring Christ where ever we go. And if we do that then we are going to have to proclaim him, not just through our actions, but through our words. How do we do that well? How do we become good preachers? If we are going to really preach Christ, and him crucified, then we need to know him not just with our minds, we have to know him with our whole hearts. We need to feel the gospel in our very bones, and if we want to feel the gospel in our bones, we are going to have to get a few of them broken.
Saint Paul is stoned and dragged out of the city and left for dead. When he goes into the next city he, "strengthened the spirits of the disciples and exhorted them to persevere in the faith, saying, 'It is necessary for us to undergo many hardships to enter the Kingdom of God.'" This is not just a theory for St. Paul or the other disciples. This is a truth they have felt in their very bones. They can genuinely witness it, and so their words have power.
We don't need to be nearly stoned to death to preach the gospel well. We don't need to go out looking for extra sufferings so that our words sound more 'real.' What we need to do is remember that when suffering does find us, whether that suffering be physical, emotional, or spiritual, God is still with us. Not only that, but God can even bring good out of it. When you encourage others, you will be able to do so well, because you have a few broken bones for the Gospel. You'll know that Christ not only heals those bones, but he offers us eternal life.
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.
How has the love of Christ made a home in my heart, not just my head? How can I grow in knowing him in my heart and not just my head?
What good is God working in the midst of my current suffering?
What "broken bones for the Gospel" have I experienced in my life?
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.
"It's all for you, Lord."
"Meet me in my suffering."
"Give me courage."
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?
In this difficult time, we will use our Action step each day to join with people around the world in praying for an end to the pandemic of the Coronavirus, for the healing of all those affected, and for the comfort of all those who have lost a loved one. The prayer below is from Archbishop José H. Gomez, President of the USCCB in his reflection and prayer:
Holy Virgin of Guadalupe,
Queen of the Angels and Mother of the Americas.
We fly to you today as your beloved children.
We ask you to intercede for us with your Son,
as you did at the wedding in Cana.
Pray for us, loving Mother,
and gain for our nation and world,
and for all our families and loved ones,
the protection of your holy angels,
that we may be spared the worst of this illness.
For those already afflicted,
we ask you to obtain the grace of healing and deliverance.
Hear the cries of those who are vulnerable and fearful,
wipe away their tears and help them to trust.
In this time of trial and testing,
teach all of us in the Church to love one another and to be patient and kind.
Help us to bring the peace of Jesus to our land and to our hearts.
We come to you with confidence,
knowing that you truly are our compassionate mother,
health of the sick and cause of our joy.
Shelter us under the mantle of your protection,
keep us in the embrace of your arms,
help us always to know the love of your Son, Jesus. Amen.
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 Fr. Anthony Sciarappa who was ordained in 2016 and is a priest of the Diocese of Pittsburgh.
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.