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).
When I think about prayer, for whatever reason my mind draws parallels to fitness. You’ve probably heard that prayer is like a muscle- we need to exercise it daily to build it up so we become stronger, and the longer we go without praying the harder it is to build our life of prayer up. I think this is a suitable analogy for us and it makes a lot of sense. How often do we hear people remind us about the importance of fitness and think to ourselves, “I’m actually doing pretty well”? If you’re an athlete chances are you’re in season most of the year and you’re doing somewhat well, but there’s always room for you to improve. How many times have you seen someone like Dwayne Johnson, who is in incredible shape, and thought that they should stop exercising because they’re in such good shape? It doesn’t make sense! As soon as The Rock stops exercising, everything he’s built will fall apart and he’ll lose that high level of fitness. The reason he’s in as good of shape as he is is because he has made fitness one of the most important parts of his life. Just so, we need to look at our prayer lives and realize that we need to be constantly working on our “prayer fitness” and that there’s never an appropriate time to stop working on it.
It might seem like no big deal that our Gospel today has Jesus going out to pray- after all, Jesus is God so it seems like he would be praying quite a bit during his life. But it’s precisely because of the context of the Gospel today that we should take special note of the action that Jesus takes to go and pray. Jesus is infinitely more in shape when it comes to prayer than the most physically fit human being is when it comes to their fitness. This is where the important message of today’s Gospel takes shape- if Jesus, being fully divine and perfect in his relationship with God, still takes time to pray before making big decisions (like choosing the twelve Apostles), how much more do we see the need for us to pray?
Take time today to recommit yourself to prayer. If Jesus needs to pray, we definitely need to pray. It’s a long road and it’s going to be full of sore spiritual muscles along the way, but before you know it, commitment to prayer will lead to those muscles being as big as Dwayne Johnson’s pecs. Let prayer become the most important part of your life.
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 is my prayer "fitness" right now? How in or out of shape am I?
What level of importance do I put on prayer? How is that reflected in my relationship with the Lord?
How can I grow my life of prayer and commit to making it the most important part of my life?
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 desire to pray more, Lord."
"Give me the grace to commit to growing my relationship with you."
"Help me to follow 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?
<p>During the month of September, we ask that each day, for the Action step of our lectio divina, everyone prays a Divine Mercy Chaplet together for the healing of all victims of clerical abuse of any kind as well as for the healing and guidance of our Church.</p>
<p>For more information on why we are doing this action step and a simple lock screen or how to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet, <a href="http://www.carpeverbum.org/prayer">click here</a>.</p>
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 Adam Smyth, the Life Teen Coordinator at St. Anthony of Padua Parish in the Woodlands, TX.
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. "