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).
Cain gets jealous, and then he kills Abel. He believes he was completely and utterly justified because Abel showed him up to the Lord. Cain brought an offering and Abel brought a better offering.
What made Abel’s offering better? He gave to the Lord before he took for himself. He gave from his first fruits instead of his leftovers. Cain saw that the Lord was pleased with his brother and that the Lord showed favor on Abel instead of Cain.
This question always comes to my mind when I read this: Was there only ‘so much favor’ to be given out that Abel got it instead of Cain? NO, there is no limit to the Lord’s favor. It was there for everyone who gave their first fruits to the Lord.
Is there only ‘so much favor’ when it comes to the Lord blessing others over blessing me? No. There is no limit to the love of God and His blessings upon us. Just because someone else got a great blessing doesn’t mean that there won’t be a blessing for you.
As most of parents have told us over and over when we were children, “don’t worry about what someone else has, just worry about what you’re doing.” That applies here too. Don’t worry about the blessings someone else has … that leads to destruction like Cain … roaming the wilderness restlessly.
Keep your eyes on your own paper, if you will. Concern yourself only about giving to the Lord what He has asking of you. Concern yourself only about how much of your life you are giving to Him. This is a lot easier said than done, but you will not be unsatisfied with your blessings from the Lord if you give Him your first fruits every day.
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 will you give to the Lord today? Is it what He is asking from you?
When have you felt jealous about what the Lord has given to someone else? What do you do about it?
Do you believe God wants to give you His favor?
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.
"God loves you."
"Jesus, I trust in you."
"God favors me."
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?
God loves you. God favors you. Make a list of all the ways God has shown you His favor, and thank Him for each one.
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Today's prayer was prepared by Katie Herzing, a former youth minister turned parish evanglization consultant living in North Carolina.
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