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).
One of my favorite quotes of all time comes from G.K. Chesterton in his book "Orthodoxy" and I am reminded of it when I read this quote. It's sort of long, but the quote is as follows:
"Because children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say, "Do it again"; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grown-up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony. But perhaps God is strong enough to exult in monotony. It is possible that God says every morning, "Do it again" to the sun; and every evening, "Do it again" to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we.”
What a perfect time of year it is for us to read this reading from Isaiah and reflect on the rest, the rejuvenation, and the new life that is provided in our Lord. As children, each of has seemingly endless energy. We go nonstop until we're put down to sleep, and games, no matter how small and simple, never get old. Somehow, over time, we lose some of that vitality. Somehow, over time, we faint and grow weary.
Isn't it such an incredible gift to have a Father who does not grow weary, but rather abounds in youthful energy and loves nothing more than to repeatedly pour Himself out lavishly on His children?!
What would it look like in your life if you trusted that our Lord never grew weary? Would you continue with even more perseverance to ask for the things you need? Would going to confession to the say the same sin become more tolerable if you truly believed that not only will the Lord forgive you again, but He will delight in it as a child delights in the same game being played over and over again?
This Advent, as we prepare to welcome our Lord into our hearts and our world at Christmas, let's work to have the faith of a child. Today, ask the Father for that gift. Lord, may each of us have the faith of children, never wondering if you have grown weary as we have, but rather coming to fully know that Your yoke is easy, Your burden is light, and in you we will find our hope and strength.
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.
In what ways have you grown tired and weary in your life? How has this affected your faith in what the Lord will do in your life?
What are the things that God does in your life that bring you childlike joy? Take some time to name them and be thankful for them.
How can you further enter into this Advent and trust in God's coming and His perfect plans?
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.
"Come, Holy Spirit."
"May I be like a child."
"Give me rest and strength."
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 today to pause and reflect on those things you have been asking the Lord to do in your life. Give Him thanks for the things He has done, and entrust to Him those other intentions with a renewed hope, knowing that God's plans are better than ours and He will hear your prayers.
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 Jason Theobald, Director of Youth Ministry at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Huntley, IL.