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).
As I was reading the Gospel for today, there was one part in particular that struck me in a way that it hasn’t before: “They immediately told him about her. He approached, grasped her hand, and helped her up.”
Often, when I have something tough going on in my life, my first response is not to turn to Jesus first. In fact, a great majority of the time, He’s the last person I tell my problem to. Considering that I make prayer a daily priority, I really should have no excuse. Yet when there’s a problem, my first response is to tell my friends, my parents, my roommates, but not Jesus. I could spend half an hour in prayer and never once voice my anxiety about the problem in front of me.
Reflecting on this tendency makes me wonder if the time it takes for me to turn to the one person that I know can help me reflects the lack of faith I have that He will help me. Do I not turn and tell my problem to Him because I don’t really believe that He can fix it?
Reading this Gospel, I’m struck by the faith of Jesus’ disciples. They didn’t have to wonder about whether or not Jesus would be able to help Peter’s mother-in-law. They had immediate faith, faith that made them turn to Him in this problem. And this turning to Him didn’t disappoint. He approached their problem, helped them in their problem, and ultimately solved their problem. This was the purpose of His coming among us during Christmas -- to approach our problem in human form, to help us with this problem as He walked among us, and ultimately to solve this problem by giving His life for ours.
Looking back on my life, I can’t think of a single time that He disappointed me, that He didn’t take my hand and help me through whatever problem I was facing. Yet every time I have a problem, I doubt His ability to help me. I don’t want to have a faith that makes Jesus jump through a bunch of hoops before I trust Him. I want to have a faith that makes me run to my Father and my God with complete confidence that He cares about the smallest problems and wants to help me through each and every one of them.
Which kind of faith do you want?
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.
Who do you run to first when a problem arises? Do you immediately turn to God or do you turn to someone or something else?
Do you have immediate faith in God or do you try to make God jump through hoops before you decide to trust Him?
Do you believe that God can and wants to help fix your problems?
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.
"Run to the Father."
"Lord, I need you."
“He approached, grasped her hand, and helped her up.”
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 Lord bear fruit in you today?
Invite God into the messiness and the problems of your life. Run into His open arms, trusting that He cares and wants to help 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 Catie Destatte, a St. Paul's Outreach Missionary at University of St. Thomas in Saint Paul, MN.