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).
There's a method of reading the Bible called "typology" that is helpful for us praying with the Bible. Basically, it's this idea that everything that is in the Old Testament is somehow prefiguring and fulfilled in what is found in the New Testament. Old Testament "types" are fulfilled in New Testament "anti-types."
One of the key things for praying with this first reading is realizing that when "Jerusalem" is mentioned in the Old Testament, you can basically insert "The Church" in order to understand what it means to us today. Jerusalem in this reading can also be referencing the human soul where God dwells, or our home in Heaven where we will (God-willing) be with God someday; but, in what is known as the "allegorical sense", it always refers in some way to the Church.
Listen to the fruitfulness that God wants from Jerusalem, the Church. He wants it to "flow with water," "drip new wine," and "flow with milk." All of these are images of a place where people can go up to to be fed, and fed with abundance.
You and I know from experience that there are deep desires in the human heart that are only filled by God. Only a relationship with Jesus Christ can fill the deepest places of our hearts. Here's the thing: you've been given your Catholic faith so that you can bring this fruitful abundance to others, or, rather, bring others to it, to Him. It is an amazing gift that you are currently a Catholic; it is a grace given by God, but not just for your own sake. It is so that you can go outward and bring that gift to others as well! They need it desperately! They need you, desperately.
God is revealing the expressed will of His heart. He wants people to know Him and in knowing Him, be fed and filled. Do our churches reflect that kind of outward fruitfulness? Or are we closed inward, merely going through the motions, ourselves not being fed on the milk and wine and honey that God wants to give to us?
If we are not living out this vocation properly, we need to ask ourselves: how am I being called to help people meet Jesus, to encounter Him? Should I start a bible study at my school? Invite more friends to youth group? Start bringing a few friends with me to adoration for a half-hour once a week? It's good to "be an example" in our schools just by living a good life, but it's a much better thing to help people actually meet Jesus, and that takes preaching the Gospel and being active.
Be fruitful! It's our job.
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 your personal relationship with the Lord right now? How are you finding your desires fulfilled, your hopes realized, and your joy complete in Him? If you are not finding Him at the moment, what do you think He is doing in your life now?
How have you seen fruitfulness in your life in sharing the Gospel and inviting others to the faith? How have other people invited you to go deeper in your faith?
What are some practical ways you can commit to bear fruit in your life by inviting people into relationship with God?
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."
"Help me share your Gospel."
"Bear fruit in 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?
Commit to taking the chance to share the Gospel with someone this week. Invite someone to adoration with you, bring a friend to a youth group event at Church, or maybe start a group who can pray together before school. Whatever you do, find a way to invite someone to meet Jesus; you can't make their life change, but you can invite them and let God work in their lives.
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 Tim Glemkowski, Youth Minister at Holy Cross Catholic Church in Batavia, IL.
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