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 remember very clearly moments throughout my life where I told God that I was doing His will, I knew exactly what I wanted to happen, and I trusted in Him that it was going to work just the way I have planned. For example, I told God Northwestern was the perfect college for me. I was going to get in, and I was going to get an awesome scholarship. Can you guess what happened? God laughed and then not-so-gently guided me until I found His actual plan for me. I ended up instead at the University of Missouri where my faith grew in ways I never knew possible and I made the most incredible friends. His plan was better and more fulfilling than I ever could have imagined. For in trying to do His will, even when I am wrong, I open myself up to being guided by the Holy Spirit.
This is what today’s second reading is all about. As humans we were created to have a relationship with God, but it is one we often do not know how to have. But lucky for us, God created us. He knows our heart and He knows all of our desires, but God also knows what is truly best for us. We want to follow God, but often we don’t know what we are doing. “We don’t know how to pray as we ought,” yet, God, who knows us so well that He has a plan for this. He gives us the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit comes to us today to help us determine God’s will. The Spirit is there to guide us. For St. Paul tells us that if our hearts are searching, the Holy Spirit will come to our aid. For following God is not about knowing every step, it is about following the Holy Spirit and how the Holy Spirit is working in our life. If our hearts are open, the Spirit will intercede to guide us to God’s will. When we follow the Spirit, it will be better than we ever imagined.
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.
Am I following God’s will or do I hope that God follows my will?
Think of a time when things did not go quite as you had planned. Where did you see God in that?
How can I be more open to doing the Father’s will under the guidance of the Holy Spirit?
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.
“Come, Holy Spirit.”
“Search my heart.”
“I give you my life.”
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?
Think of all the plans you have for your life. Next, try to imagine something even greater. Your life is a gift. In prayer, offer the gift of your life and all that it may become to the Father who has “plans for welfare and not evil, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11).
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 Lisa Kendzior, Junior High Youth Minister at St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church in Crystal Lake, IL.