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 ever seen a mustard seed? Have you ever stopped to think about just how tiny it really is? I can't tell you how grateful I am for google, which just told me that mustard seeds are usually 1 to 2 millimeters in diameter. Y'all, that is incredibly tiny, and yet Jesus uses the image of this microscopic seed to describe the KINGDOM OF GOD...
In today's Gospel, Jesus Himself says that it is the smallest of ALL seeds on earth. He could have used a bean, or a kernel of corn to describe His Kingdom, but He didn't. He uses the image of the mustard seed for a very specific purpose.
Have you ever felt like you were the most unnoticeable, smallest, or most undesirable person in the room? I absolutely have. But listen to what our sweet, sweet, Jesus is telling you today. You, like a mustard seed, are WORTHY. You are IMPORTANT. It is from the smallest of seeds that the great mustard plant grows. You are NEVER too small for Jesus. He uses the weakest, the littlest, to fulfill His plan on earth and build up His Kingdom.
Today is the feast of St. Angela Merici, a perfect example of what it means to be one of God's beloved mustard seeds. When Angela was just ten years old, she was left an orphan with her older sister. Shortly after this tragedy in her life, Angela's sister died suddenly. Angela was left feeling completely alone, unworthy of love, and unable to accomplish anything extraordinary. She considered herself to be one of the smallest, most undesirable, souls.
Despite the countless obstacles she faced in her lifetime, Angela was able to overcome them. She had such a desire to help young girls pursue an education, and on her own, just one small mustard seed in the hand of God, Angela changed the course of education forever. We can thank St. Angela Merici for many of the ways that education has progressed.
God has called every single one of us, no matter how small or weak we may feel, to play a part in His Kingdom. He compares His Kingdom in today's Gospel to a tiny little mustard seed, and yet we know that His Kingdom is great. Today the Lord wants to remind you that you can use your smallness to give Him glory and do His will. He doesn't care if you're under five feet, or have a big nose. He has called you to give yourself to Him, and watch as He transforms your weaknesses into something beautiful.
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.
Have you ever felt like you were the most unnoticeable, smallest, or most undesirable person in the room? Who does the Lord tell you that you are? How do you think He wants to use you to build up His Kingdom?
What are your weaknesses? What are your strengths and gifts?
How will you use your weaknesses, strengths, and gifts to help to build up the Kingdom of God?
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.
"His grace is sufficient for you."
"His power is made perfect in weakness."
"Lord, make something beautiful out of me."
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?
Offer your weaknesses, hurts, and struggles to the Lord today, and allow Him to transform them into something beautiful that you can use to help build up His Kingdom.
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 Sarah Freddino, a FOCUS Missionary at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, FL.