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).
How often in our lives do we not see Christ right beside us because we’re not looking? When I was in high school, I went through a time where I was so focused on finding immediate happiness in the face of the struggles of life that I did not see the everlasting fulfillment that Jesus was offering to me. Whether it was searching for artificial experiences to flavor my life or trying to use people for happiness rather than find happiness together as one people in Christ, something was always missing.
Today’s Gospel shows Mary Magdalene literally keeping her face turned away from Jesus as He calls out to her. She was so focused on the sorrow of the Jesus’s Passion and Death that she completely ignored His Resurrection right next to her! Her desire for Christ is fulfilled when she finally turns her face to Him and she is overjoyed at the sight of her Lord. After being so worried about popularity, parties, and sports in high school, I finally remembered that Jesus was the center of what I was looking for. When I came to that moment where I finally allowed Christ to touch my heart by being open to Him and knowing that He is ALIVE for me, my heart became alive for Him. By making the time and effort to pray, even when it wasn’t always easy, I was able to see Him in many different ways. We don’t always see Christ in the most obvious ways; sometimes He speaks to us through people or events, sometimes it’s in the silence of our hearts. But, when we open our hearts to Him, we open the door to knowing He is our friend.
We have so many things pulling us in so many directions in our lives, but the one direction we should always face is towards Christ. Jesus wants a relationship with you, but are you looking?
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 a time in your life that Jesus was next to you and you didn't realize? What made you realize He was right there?
What is pulling away from Christ? How can you run back to Him?
How are you committing to Christ? What can you do today to commit/recommit yourself to Him?
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 I need you."
"Open my heart to you."
"Lord I want to see 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?
Today, look for Jesus in your life, the moments He is next to you. Then make time tonight to spend some quality time with Him. Go to adoration, go pray in front of a tabernacle or go on a walk with Him.
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Today's prayer was prepared by Brendan Slovacek, a student at Franciscan University of Steubenville.
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