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).
Often times in our relationship with Jesus, we can believe the lie that we have to perform up to a certain level, and that if we somehow don’t meet these standards that we impose upon ourselves, that God can’t work in us or through us. We think we have to have it all figured out and reach a certain high-performing status in our spiritual lives in order for God to love us / call us. But that’s not how God works.
In last week's reading, St. Paul said to the Romans: “The gifts and call of God are irrevocable.”
God doesn’t call us because we are perfect. He calls us because He loves us – as we are. Regardless of our weaknesses, our insecurities, our selfishness, our tendency to judge others and gossip about them, our repetitive falling flat on our faces in this or that endeavor. He made this very clear during his time on Earth. Jesus chose Peter to be the leader of the Church; one of the Apostles who failed most miserably and publicly when he denied Jesus three times on the night that He needed him most. Yet, he didn’t revoke his calling on Peter’s life – a few days later, after He rose from the dead, he appeared to Peter on the shore of the Sea of Tiberius and He upped the ante and called Peter again, this time calling him even deeper into mission.
Jesus isn’t the coach who benches his player when they screw up. He’s the coach who continues to encourage his players from the bench after they screw up big time that they are still perfect and wonderful in His eyes and that they can do far more than they think they are capable of. Jesus is not an indian giver. When He gives gifts, he gives them freely; and doesn’t take them back, even if we lose them, abuse them, or throw them in the trash.
And part of the gifts he gives us in our lives are particular callings or missions he has for our lives. Your calling and mine won’t be the same as St. Peter’s, but it’s still absolutely essential and important. And our callings are not revoked when we totally screw them up. He continues to call you and me today. So if you you’ve totally screwed up in your spiritual life lately, or if you haven’t prayed in a long time and you feel “far” from God, and maybe a friend passed along this reflection to you today and you don’t feel “worthy” of God, take a moment to sit with these words from St. Paul and just accept the fact that no matter how much you have “screwed up” or how “far” you feel from God, he continues to pour out his gifts upon you, He continues to call you. He continues to love you and invite you back into friendship with Him. He’s not focusing on how much you’ve screwed up. He’s focusing on all of the exciting and incredible plans He has for you and all the gifts He has that He just can’t wait to give you. He’s not an indian giver.
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 the gifts that you recognize God has put in your life?
Where in your life is God calling right now, picking you up where you're fallen, and reminding you of how much he loves you?
How can you, right now, open yourself more fully to God's call and plans for your life?
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.
"You give perfect gifts."
"Thank you, Jesus."
"Father, I trust in 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?
Take a moment today to sit with any way that you may have drifted from your calling, from the gifts God has given you, and return to him in prayer and trust, allowing him to pour his love out more fully on you.
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 Austin Ashcraft, a whitewater rafting guide in Colorado.
If you have anything you'd like our team to pray for, please go to the page of our website called "Prayers" and let us know how we can pray for you today.