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).
Right now the Church is in “Ordinary Time”, the longest liturgical season we have. Everything seems normal, the Church isn’t decorated any differently than usual, and, aside from a few dope feast days (I’m looking at you Corpus Christi), there isn’t much going on. But honestly, the fact that the Church dedicates such a large amount of time to “ordinary” is a big testament to how important it is for us to have God even in our ordinary moments.
The Gospel today is a good example of that. We pray the Our Father on a weekly basis, it’s a common penance for confession, it’s in the rosary six times, and it’s one of the most recited prayers on a global basis. We know it by heart, and there can be a big temptation to zone out a bit or to skim the remainder of the Gospel because we know the prayer already; we know Jesus’s words. And in all honesty, the Our Father is allowed to be an “ordinary” prayer. What’s wrong with praying the words of Christ so often that they become second-nature, with constantly inviting God into your day so much so that you know these words will never be forgotten?
When did ordinary ever become a bad thing? Most of our lives are fairly ordinary, having a set pace and schedule to them. Don’t we want God in every moment of our lives? Jesus spent the first 30 years of His life living an “ordinary” life, and so when we’re following our routines, doing the things required of us for each day, we’re doing something sanctified by Christ Himself who did those very same things. And whether our lives are in the “ordinary” phase or in a time of change, two things are always constant: we need God more than we’ll ever know, and God loves us more than we’ll ever know. There’s something beautiful to a prayer becoming “ordinary” as well, when you’ve prayed it so many times that it becomes almost an instinct, when it’s become such a solid foundation for you that it rolls off your tongue effortlessly as you know with full confidence that your prayer is heard and adored by God just as much as any other prayer.
So yes, invite God into the ordinary, pray the prayers as often as possible. Because we need Him in the moments we’re sitting on our phones, we need Him in the moments we’re having another normal dinner, we need Him in the moments we’re literally doing nothing; and He loves us infinitely in all those moments as well. Don’t put God in a box and expect Him to be ordinary, but know that even in the ordinary moments, He’s with you just as much as He was with His apostles during His time on Earth. And of course, just because a prayer becomes ordinary to us doesn’t mean it loses any ounce of it’s power. So don’t be afraid to let these prayers become second nature to you, to let them be an instinct whenever something goes wrong, but also never forget the honor we have and the power that comes from calling God our “Father”.
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 the ordinary moments in your life that you need to invite God into? How can you do that each and every day?
Why is it important to be as connected to God in the ordinary times as it is in the big moments?
How can something like calling God our Father be such a part of us that it is ordinary in our thought and speech, yet still be one of the most impactful things in our lives?
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.
"Be the Lord of every moment of my life."
"Thy Will be done."
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?
It is time to strengthen your ordinary prayer life. Even if it seems mundane or ordinary, bring God into every moment of your life and add something new to your daily prayer life, even something short and simple.
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 Tatiana Schaffer, a student at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign studying Engineering and Psychology.