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).
Have you ever thought “what have I gotten myself into here?” I know I have. In college, I thought this when I chose to take Greek for fun in college. What was I thinking? The truth was there was a friend of mine who I had a crush on who was taking it too. I just went to Greece, and can’t speak a word of it! One year my friends and I decided to do something fun for New Year’s so we got tickets to this party in a ballroom, which we thought would be classy. It wasn’t. We spent the whole night just sitting at a table chatting thinking “What are we doing here?” We all make foolish decisions.
But I’ve also thought it about my faith life at times too. I’ve doubted that I was on the right path, doing the right thing. Being in my early thirties, single and childless, looking at the Lord and asking “What am I doing here?” Did he trick me into a life I didn’t sign up for and I walked in willingly?
That’s how Jeremiah is feeling. He chose to live for God and then just got beaten up for it. So he goes back to prayer (that’s important!) and says “You duped me and I just let it happen!” Basically, you tricked me, this isn’t the life I signed up for. You sold me something else when we got started. Now everyone hates me, mocks me and beats on me because I’m telling them what you told me. As the old saying goes, there’s “no profit in being a prophet.”
Then Jeremiah talks to himself, like we’ve all done a time or two and says, “I will not talk of Him anymore, I’m done speaking his name. This is it, it’s over.”
I’ve done that a time or two as well. “Lord, I come to you for Mass every day. I pray the Rosary every day. I do all of the things that you ask, and I’m still hated and persecuted because of this. I know that earth is not Heaven, but you could give me a little taste of the glory. I don’t want to do this anymore.”
The most amazing part about being a disciple of Christ comes next though. Jeremiah writes: “But then it becomes like fire burning in my heart, imprisoned in my bones; I grow weary holding it in, I cannot endure it.” The fact that he isn’t talking about God and sharing his message is literally eating him alive. He can’t keep it in any longer and he goes out again to preach the message once again, knowing he’s going to be persecuted.
We also go back. We know that His way is the only true path, and that on this earth we will have trouble, but our home is not this earth. We were made for Heaven and in the short time we are here, we are to do His will.
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.
How did you get here? Why did God bring you to the place you are now?
Have you ever wanted to turn away from God? Why? What made you turn to Him?
When things are rough, in your life, in your faith, where do you turn?
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 want to follow you."
"Lead me Lord."
"Jesus, 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?
Today, ask God what He wants from you. Then ask Him for the strength and joy to accomplish it.
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.
Katie Herzing is a former youth minister turned parish evangelization consultant living in North Carolina.