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).
I was so excited to be there! We finally arrived at our retreat center overlooking the Mediterranean and my best friend was in the room next to mine! Each window opened up next to each other over a beautiful little balcony-esque overhang. We were hanging half-out the windows talking to each other about how awesome this place was, how awesome this view was, how awesome this retreat was going to be! Problem was it was a silent retreat. As we were rejoicing and merry making, our faithful as well as colorful spiritual director emerged from under the balcony, looked up at us, made rather direct eye contact, and told us, “Cut it out.” We did immediately.
God is love. God is faithful. God is mercy itself. At the same time He knows, better than anybody, how much sin hurts us, hurts others, and in some cosmic fashion so difficult to describe empirically, hurts all of humanity and creation itself. It’s easy for us to conceive of sin as a stain on the soul making us dirty or naughty. Sin is not so much a stain as it is a wound. The more we get, the more ache. The more our souls bleed. The more we’re in danger of a kind of spiritual death. We have certain sins that are one timers. We try ‘em, we don’t like ‘em. But we’ve got those others – the ones we like. The ones we enjoy. The ones we tolerate. The ones we can explain. Problem is like ‘em or not, they’re killing us. Today the God who is all love, all mercy, all understanding, all compassion, today that very same God speaks to us, “Cut it out.”
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 sins do you need to cut out of your life? How are they keeping your from God?
Is there anything that will be particularly difficult to cut out of your life? Are there any sins that you tolerate or enjoy? In what ways do you need God's help in cutting them out?
When was the last time you sought grace, especially through the sacrament of Reconciliation, to overcome your sins and bring life back into your soul?
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, have mercy."
"I want to be free from sin."
"Help me turn to 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?
Really spend some time examining your conscience. There are a bunch of examines online, but focus on those sins that you need to weed out of your life. Identify those things that are killing your soul that your tolerate or enjoy. Before Mass on Sunday, go to Confession and receiving the graces to resist sin and bring divine life back into your soul.
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. Jon Bakkelund, priest of the Diocese of Rockford.
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