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).
Today’s Gospel shows Jesus using some pretty strong language to warn all his followers that they must be “righteous” to enter into the Kingdom of God. Righteousness, which is the same as being just, is when we seek God’s goodness in a situation and choose to show God to others in our actions. There are plenty of times in our lives when we can do this. If you’re walking down the hallway at school and someone trips and drops their books, you can show God to them by helping them up instead of laughing. You can show God to others when you choose to be nice to your siblings instead of yelling at them to go away. You can choose to be righteous when you spend time praying every day so you can grow closer to God. Being righteous isn’t just some sort of title that we’re given; being righteous is a choice that we make as Christians to lead ourselves and others to the glory of God.
Of course, there are times that we can fail to seek and choose the good of God. When we do fail to be righteous, God’s mercy will always be there for us to help us get back onto the pathway towards the good of Heaven. However, we are not called to seek failure, we’re called to seek success; the successful life of a saint is the life of righteousness. As we focus on denying temptations and things that turn us away from Heaven during this time of Lent, this is the perfect time for us to do more than just give up things. We can take this time of Lent to grow in righteousness. We can choose to direct all of our actions towards Heaven. We can stop thinking “I’ll be a saint one day” and start living the life of a saint today. What are you going to do today to be righteous and be a saint?
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.
What situations have been presented to you lately where you can be God toward other people?
Have you "skipped out" on the opportunity lately?
What will you do to today to show God's love and mercy to others? To live as a saint today?
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 love like you."
"Don't let me miss you today."
"Show me how to be a saint 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?
Ask the intercession of the saints about how to live a life like they did. Choose to do one new thing today and then tomorrow and the next day that keep you on the path toward sainthood.
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Today's prayer was prepared by Brendan Slovacek, a student at Franciscan University of Steubenville.
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