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 anything here to eat?” At first, this may seem like a strange question and a strange request that Jesus makes. Why would he care about eating something? He has just risen from the dead. Does he even need to eat? Doesn’t he have more important things to be doing like training these disciples to go evangelize the world? Isn’t that more important than eating? Yet, he asks the question. And they offer him a piece of baked fish. And he took it and ate with them.
What is Christ trying to say to them in that act? What is he trying to say to us? That our entire humanity has been redeemed, right down to our basic human desire for food. He could have talked about heaven and strictly spiritual things, but he wanted to emphasize this point: matter matters. Nothing is insignificant for God. Because of the Incarnation and now because of the Resurrection, every moment and every aspect of our humanity is charged with divine life. It all means something. We tend to only think of God in terms of our most spiritual moments of prayer and divine connection, but Christ came to be a part of our entire lives. Sometimes, we think that in order to be holy, we have to talk about strictly spiritual things all the time. But Christ himself disproves that theory with his words here in this Gospel. He just wants to sit down and eat with the disciples. Who knows that they talked about during that meal- but I bet it was something surprisingly normal and human- maybe about how to best cook fish? Why would Jesus “waste” time talking about that when there are more “important” things to be talking about? Because, while he is God, he is at the same time a human. And he cares about human things. And he remains a human even after the Resurrection. And he wanted us to know that.
So, in your prayer today, think about some normal human activities that you will do today (or if you are praying at night, that you will do tomorrow), and invite God into them. Ask Christ to come and show you what he has to do with your hobby of playing guitar, your love for drawing, your obsession with whatever series you might be watching, your big dinner that you are preparing for with family or friends, or whatever it might be. And ask Christ to come into a conversation you might have with a friend or family member. Ask them about their life; ask, and really listen. Really be interested in their life and their interests, hobbies, passions, etc. Listen to what they have to say. Then, if you really listen, you will get a tiny taste of how attentively Christ listens to you. He wants to break into all of our lives, not just the moments where we think he belongs, like prayer, but all of it. He wants to sit and eat with you. So, let him. I hear he likes fish...
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 are normal activities of your day that you could invite Jesus into?
Who is someone you would like to have a conversation with and really listen to like Christ?
What is one area of your life you would like to invite Jesus into?
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.
"You are with me."
"You care for me."
"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?
In this difficult time, we will use our Action step each day to join with people around the world in praying for an end to the pandemic of the Coronavirus, for the healing of all those affected, and for the comfort of all those who have lost a loved one. The prayer below is from Archbishop José H. Gomez, President of the USCCB in his reflection and prayer during coronavirus:
Holy Virgin of Guadalupe,
Queen of the Angels and Mother of the Americas.
We fly to you today as your beloved children.
We ask you to intercede for us with your Son,
as you did at the wedding in Cana.
Pray for us, loving Mother,
and gain for our nation and world,
and for all our families and loved ones,
the protection of your holy angels,
that we may be spared the worst of this illness.
For those already afflicted,
we ask you to obtain the grace of healing and deliverance.
Hear the cries of those who are vulnerable and fearful,
wipe away their tears and help them to trust.
In this time of trial and testing,
teach all of us in the Church to love one another and to be patient and kind.
Help us to bring the peace of Jesus to our land and to our hearts.
We come to you with confidence,
knowing that you truly are our compassionate mother,
health of the sick and cause of our joy.
Shelter us under the mantle of your protection,
keep us in the embrace of your arms,
help us always to know the love of your Son, Jesus. Amen.
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 Austin Ashcraft, a graduate student in New Orleans.
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.