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).
Our Gospel today is amazingly simple to hear, but remarkably difficult to follow.
"Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?"
He said to him,
"You shall love the Lord, your God,
with all your heart,
with all your soul,
and with all your mind.
This is the greatest and the first commandment.
The second is like it:
You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments."
I was recently speaking with a priest friend about the group of people in our Church who do not always have clear ministry opportunities- Young Adults. Navigating the waters of discerning your Vocation, while learning how to be independent, while remaining professional in your job, while also trying to put yourself out there in friendships with other like minded Christians is not impossible, but difficult. When I had asked this priest how I could help get more young adults in my area to be committed to the community, he pointed me towards the simple truth and said, “keep growing in love with Jesus and the rest will take care of itself. Then care for those in the community just as others have been patient and loving towards you in your walk with the Lord. That’s it!”
I was somewhat disappointed in his answer, because of course I wanted a concrete action plan so I could check off boxes, or tangibly do tasks to help increase numbers or enthusiasm for the Young Adult community, but, silly me- that’s not how it works when you’re a disciple of Christ. It can be easy to be unsure of what to do with the unrest we have within us when we see certain injustices, hear of others pain, or learn of challenges others face. It is natural and good to be a do-er when difficulties are before us, but as followers of Christ, if we do not allow our hearts, our souls, our minds to be transformed by His love, then how are we to love our neighbor as ourselves? It’s like the announcement on an airplane when the flight attendant speaks about procedures in an emergency- adults put your oxygen mask on before assisting children. We cannot give to our neighbors any amount of authentic love, which as we know is not all rainbows and butterflies, but requires hard work of truth to be shared and respect to be exchanged, if we have not grown in our love of the Lord first.
When we make the commitment to spend time in silence and prayer with the Lord, our hearts change. When we share our unrepeatable gifts and talents we’ve been given for God’s glory, our souls are encouraged. When we read Scripture, ask questions about our faith, or have dialogue about the Lord, we open our minds to Truth.
The call to love our neighbors as ourselves is very apparent in our world right now. Our neighbors are those of different religions, races, and regions, and our neighbors are those we interact with everyday. It might be hard to see, but the Lord is visible in all of our neighbors. Despite differences we may hold on beliefs or opinions, by loving God, we love our neighbor as well. If we are merciful with ourselves and our shortcomings, we can be merciful to our neighbors as well.
So harking back to the exhortation I received from my priest friend- I want to commit to loving the Lord more each day with all my heart, soul, and mind. I want to commit to remembering that I’m the Lord’s beloved...and so are those around me. If I show them love as I have been shown, the rest will take care of itself.
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 are you committed to loving the Lord each day?
How when you love the Lord does that show to others?
How can you be Christ to those around you?
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.
"Help me love you Lord."
"I want to love you more."
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?
What is one thing you can do to love God today? Write Him a letter? Go to adoration? Make a plan and do it.
Smartphone Lock Screen
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Today's prayer was prepared by Katy Praetzel, a worship leader in Pittsburgh, PA.
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.