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).
At the end of the Church calendar year, which we are rapidly approaching, our minds turn towards the end of time through the readings – and I love it. What a powerful reading we have from St. Paul today!
Whether we live or die, we do so for the Lord. For, at the end of time, every knee shall bow and every tongue give praise to God! This sort of statement, of course, can be read at first as a nice thing that the letter says – when we meet him, we'll praise him and it'll be great. And that is true - hopefully. Because, of course, there's the alternative: our knee might bend because it'd forced to as it realizes, before the grandeur and the wonder of God, that it has made a terrible mistake.
It's not something we like to think about, but of course it's a reality: if we are going to have the option of heaven, there also is the option of hell. And we need to be sober and alert about this – if we don't live for God, and prepare ourselves to die for him and live with him forever, then we'll live forever outside of his grace and in torment for not being able to get back to him whom our hearts were created to love.
The good news, of course, is that Jesus came so that we don't have to be scared of this fact. It should keep us vigilant, knowing that our response is necessary to end up in heaven, but also hopeful, for we have a Great High Priest, a Savior, one who has won for us salvation by his victory over sin and death.
Today, let's choose Jesus, knowing that in living for him now we're preparing for an eternity of joy with him, bowing our knee before his majesty and giving him glory with our tongue.
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.
Are you living for yourself or for God? How are you being vigilant, responding to God's grace while being aware of the reality of eternity apart from God's love and grace?
How often do you consider and prepare for life forever with Christ? How are you preparing yourself to die for him and live forever with him?
How will you choose to live for Jesus today, to live forever with him in eternity?
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 live for you."
"Change my life."
"I love 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, be conscious of who you are living for - yourself or Jesus. As you make decisions throughout the day, pause and consider whose will you are doing, God's or you own. Be aware of who you are living for. Are you are trying to do what Jesus would do and what you think God wants, or are you just doing what is best for you? Put God first and live for Him.
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 Jason Theobald, Executive Director of Carpe Verbum.
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.
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