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).
As you’ve just read, today’s Gospel is the Parable of the Great Feast, and I love this comment made by one of those with Jesus,
“Blessed is the one who will dine in the Kingdom of God.”
Isn’t that what we all want? Isn’t that our end goal? To dine in the Kingdom of God and share in the feast that He has prepared for us? It’s so easy to just say yes to that, but it’s much harder to live out that yes.
In the parable that Jesus shares, many people were invited to this big, beautiful feast. How many of them went? How many of them found other reasons not to go? Pretty much all of them. But, here's the kicker, they weren’t all bad reasons! I find myself able to relate to those who declined this generous invitation. A few of them had just made some big purchases, land and oxen, those are important things that need to be tended to. Another had just gotten married, that's a big deal, I’d decline the invitation too.
But how often do we receive this invitation from the Lord to dine with him and decline it for less important things? How often do we work, exercise, scroll through social media, spend time with friends, enjoy our hobbies (these are not all bad things, in fact they can be very good, life giving things) instead of sit and pray with the Lord? As much as I don’t want to admit it, I do this all the time. I can always find something else that needs to be done before I sit down to pray. And it may be important. It may need to get done. But is it more important than Jesus? Is it more important than my prayer life? Than my soul?
The Lord, who created you for Himself, is preparing a heavenly banquet for you.
If we truly want to take part in this heavenly banquet, it starts now. Jesus doesn’t just give us the one invitation at the end of our lives, He’s already invited us. He is still inviting us; inviting us into prayer, into an intimate relationship with Him. We need to accept the invitation now, so that when Jesus brings us to the banquet He has prepared for us, we’re ready to accept it with open arms and join Him for eternity.
The things of this world are passing, but our home in heaven is eternal.
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.
Am I prepared for the banquet that Jesus is inviting me to, right now? How so? How am I not?
What are the things that I place more importance on than my relationship with God? How do they distract me from what is more important?
How often do I consider eternity when I live my daily life? How do my decisions and actions draw me closer or pull me farther from an eternity with 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.
"You are the more important, Lord."
"Help prepare me for your banquet."
"Let me accept your invitation today."
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 time today to schedule prayer. Put down your phone, close the laptop, turn off the TV and be present with the Lord, accepting his invitation to be with him. If you struggle with discipline, invite someone like a parent or friend to hold you accountable to take the time to pray.
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 Anna Roche, the High School Youth Minister at St. Thomas the Apostle 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.