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 Gospel might come off as alarming and confusing. Jesus, who is the prince of peace and this great example of love and unity, is talking about very serious division. He says that “a father will be divided against his son and a son against his father, a mother against her daughter and a daughter against her mother” and He even goes on from there to describe greater divisions in the family. It is very easy to read this and be confused by the message Jesus is trying to teach. However, I believe one thing that can make this passage much less confusing is to realize one very important thing.
Christ, at no point says that He desires these divisions.
Think about that, He is merely telling us of the unfortunate reality of pursuing our faith in a less than perfect world. It is not that He desires these things to happen; He obviously would love it if we could pursue our faith in Him and everyone around us would not only ok with that, but were accepting of it. However, as I am sure you know, we live in a fallen world and people are not perfect and many people do not care about Christ, or even worse, see Him as someone of little to no value. If you are living a life for Christ some people in your life, even family or friends, will not be able to accept it for what it is. This is not something Christ wants, but it is unfortunately just the world we live in. Following Christ has never been an easy thing to do, but if we cling to Christ and root ourselves in prayer, then we can begin to build up the strength needed to get through the various challenges that we will face, because it is only through a relationship with Christ that we can begin to live for Him.
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 are some relationships that may struggle in your life, if you fully committed to God? Why?
What do you think it means that Jesus says there will be division because of Him, especially in light of the idea that He never says that He desires that division?
Why does division happen?
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.
"Jesus, I trust in You."
"Come Holy Spirit."
"Here I am, 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?
Do not seek division, but don't water down your relationship with God because you are afraid of how it will affect other relationships in your life. Today, take an active step to making your relationship with the THE MOST important relationship in your life.
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Today's prayer was prepared by Jason Liuzzi, a middle school religion teacher at St. John the Evangelist School in St John, IN.
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