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).
"The spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me,
because the LORD has anointed me..."
As we enter into the third week of Advent this beautiful Sunday, these words hit me in a new and real way...
The season of Advent is a season of preparation, of hopeful waiting. But preparation for what? The coming of Christ. When I think of Christmas, it is so easy to think about and reflect on the coming of Christ as a baby in a manger. We all know the story... The angel came to a woman named Mary and told her that she would bear a son... there was no room at the inn... he was born in a manger... We know these facts because this coming of Christ is so tangible, it's something we know because it was written down and has been shared for thousands of years.
However, have you ever thought about how we can use this season of advent to prepare for the coming of Christ in a new way? How can we prepare ourselves this year for the coming of Christ not only in history, but into our own lives and hearts?
The first reading tells us that the spirit of the Lord is upon us. And this is made possible because the Word became Flesh, and dwelt among us. God Himself chose to humble Himself and become one of us, so that He might live and dwell in us. And by virtue of our Baptism, He has also anointed us and invited us to share in His life.
This is the perfect time of the year to really reflect on the fact that Christ Himself dwells within each of us. Christmas is a very personal thing. He came to dwell in and save all, but He also chooses every day to dwell in YOU. He loves each of you uniquely and desires to be present in each of your lives.
The Gospel today shows us how we can live out of this reality that the Lord desires to dwell in us. John the Baptist is entirely aware that the spirit of the Lord is within him and he responds to the peoples' questions by pointing to the Lord. He tells them that he is merely here to proclaim the Lord, because he realizes that everything he does is on account of the Lord living in and working through him.
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 are you using this Advent season to prepare your heart to receive the Lord in a new way?
How can we prepare ourselves this year for the coming of Christ not only in history, but into our own lives and hearts?
Do you believe that Christ dwells within you? Where do you feel God's presence in your heart and in your 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.
"Prepare the way."
"The Spirit of the Lord is upon me."
"The Lord is present."
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?
Immerse yourself in the reality of the gift of the Lord within you and truly live out of that reality.
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.