Lectio Divina: “Scripture Reading”
The simple prayer practice of Lectio Divina takes us through five steps, as we are drawn closer to God, through each prayerful reading of the Scriptures.
Silencio ( silence )
Make yourself comfortable in a place that is as free from interruptions as possible. Begin with silence for a few minutes, humbly asking your Heavenly Father to quiet your heart and make you aware that you are in His loving presence. When you are ready, begin reading.
Lectio ( read )
In this first reading, simply open yourself to the presence of God. Read the passage slowly and prayerfully, allowing short pauses between sentences. Over time you will discover whether it is more helpful for you to read silently or out loud. Try them both. As you read, take in the words and the overall flow of the passage. Then allow a time of silence following the reading continuing to open yourself to hear from God’s Spirit.
Meditatio ( meditate )
During the second prayerful reading of the passage, listen for a particular word or a phrase through which God wants to speak to you. You will notice your attention being drawn to something. Once you have “received” the word or phrase, begin to silently meditate on that. Reflect on why God would highlight this for you today, ask Him any questions that come to mind, and note things that seem important as you meditate on what He has given you.
Oratio ( prayer )
In the third prayerful reading of the passage, listen now for the Father’s invitation, and respond from your heart. God is always inviting us in some way… to let go of something, or to take up something; to do something or be something. The invitation can take innumerable forms. Following the reading, continue to listen for His invitation and then respond silently or out loud from an honest heart.
Contemplatio ( rest )
The focus of the fourth prayerful reading of the passage is to simply rest now in the love that the Father has for you. Let the words wash over you. Simply allow the Spirit to draw you close and fill you with His love, grace and peace. Linger in this place of deep connection. You are being filled and refreshed for your continuing journey. Take your word, phrase or image with you. It is something to which you can return throughout the day; a reminder of the love of the Father for you and the special word He had for you today.