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).
As we enter into the month of October, a number of things come to mind: fall weather, shorter daylight, apples, and baseball. Baseball is an all-around great sport! Call me crazy, but one of the things of baseball that fascinates me is the meticulous grass on the field. Next time you watch a baseball game look at the grass and see how perfect it looks. It is as if the grounds crew took yard sticks, measured precise lines, and then kept their eyes focused on the lines in order to have perfectly aligned rows in the outfield. There is something similar here that can be applied to our spiritual life as well...
Jesus in the Gospel says, “No one who sets a hand to the plow and looks to what was left behind is fit for the Kingdom of God.” It makes sense...No one can be fit for Heaven without keeping one’s eyes fixed on God. If you look behind, or look anywhere other than where God is found, we tend to travel down a risky path. In the same way no groundskeeper at a baseball stadium can cut/plow the beautiful straight lines we see if they decide to look behind them, close their eyes, or stare into the sky...the field would look awful. A common principle is shared here...to cut baseball diamond grass well and to follow Jesus well, one must look straight ahead, focus on our goal, and never look off in another direction!
My friends, keep focused on Jesus and His ways! Our direction in life must always be aimed towards the Lord. Getting off this path can get messy and uneven. Let’s seek today to “cut the lines straight” by staying super close to Jesus!
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 am I focused on this season?
What parts of my life are messy and uneven right now?
How can I better focus on my goal and stay close in Jesus?
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.
"I keep my eyes fixed on God."
"Keep me focused on you, Lord."
"Make my paths straight and even."
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?
Keep your eyes fixed on Jesus today, and see what a difference it makes!
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Today's prayer was prepared by Fr. John McNamara, priest of the Diocese of Rockford.
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