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).
I feel like one of the big questions people of faith get asked is: how can you believe in a God who allows others to suffer? Cancer, violence, crazy storms, scandal, death. So many days it seems hard to see the goodness in the world.
But that is what our first reading today is all about. God knows this. He knows that life as a human is hard since the fall and the entrance of sin. And He knows that better than anyone since His son died living that life. But we have a God who takes evil and uses it for good, even though it is a good that we might never know in our earthly life.
And this is something that is super hard to come to terms with. Yet, this is what St. Paul instructs us to do. He tells us that it is only through endurance that we will see the promises of the Father.
For several months, I have been following a mom on Instagram. Her young child was diagnosed with a heart condition. Leaving her other children at home, she spent many nights in the hospital watching her child go through test after test. But what moved me about her account was how she praised the Lord. How even on the bad days, or the angry days she gave over to the Lord in surrender. It didn't fix the situation, but she knew that ultimately her child belonged to the Lord and that He already saved her two thousand years ago. This mother endured and her child endured and their story became a witness of goodness of the Lord that has touched thousands of people.
So next time you encounter suffering in your life or in the world, gear up. Get ready to endure for the Lord and know that He has already won and He keeps his promises.
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.
When suffering happens (big or small) do I immediately ask "why God" or do I try to praise Him in the midst of the storm?
Do you look of the good in the midst of suffering?
How can you praise the Lord in the midst of a small suffering today? And then another? And another?
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 praise you Lord."
"I love you Lord."
"I see your goodness."
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?
Take some time to ask the Lord to remind you of the promises that He has kept throughout history. This song is a beautiful reminder about His promises even when we don't see it yet. Let it be a reminder to you this week.
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 Lisa Kendzior, Junior High Youth Minister at St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church in Crystal Lake, IL.
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.