Lectio Divina – a holy reading of the Bible slowly, savoring it, and enjoying it with the Lord – is the spiritual practice of sacred reading of the scriptures. The intention is not to learn or gain information but to deepen our relationship with God. St Benedict encourages us to “to listen with the ear of our hearts.”
Join me once a week for Lectio Divina. I will share a verse and a word that spoke to my heart. Read and listen to the verses here. And gently ask God for a word or phrase that speaks to your heart for that day – that is what lectio means. Once we find that gift, we hold it, meditate, and savor its meaning. This step is called meditation.
Then offer that word back to God in prayer or the third step of oratio. In prayer we allow our real selves to be touched and changed by the word of God.
Finally, we simply rest in the presence of the One who has used His word as a means of inviting us to accept His transforming embrace. No one who has ever been in love needs to be reminded that there are moments in loving relationships when words are unnecessary.
Come into the presence of the Lord.
After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him.”
After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen in the east went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh. Matthew 2: 1-2, 9-11 (NIV)
When they saw the star, they were overjoyed.
The Wise men didn’t have maps.
The Magi didn’t use their new GPS unit.
Their camels didn’t know the route as they traveled into new territory.
They just looked up and heaven became their guide.
Lord so often I look down, not up.
Disappointment blinds my eyes from seeing your hand upon me, leading me on my spiritual journey.
Discouragement numbs me from feeling your gentle, reassuring nudge of love and guidance.
The noise of busyness buzzes so loud that I don’t hear your words of wisdom.
I look down at my feet for some hint of where to go.
I look down at the path where I have walked in the past hoping for a glimpse of the future.
I look down upon the gift of life you so graciously have given me, forgetting its value and purpose.
When I feel lost, confused, unloved I look in the wrong direction. The Magi taught me a valuable lesson.
The Magi looked up.
They looked up when they were lost, wandering in places they have never been before.
They drew upon what God taught them earlier about following his star and trusted in that guidance to lead them.
They didn’t let discouragement, disappointment and the urgency of everyday busyness clutter their sense of direction – they looked up.
The Magi looked up to heaven with each step and they not only were overjoyed, they found Christ!
May we all look up more often on our path of life.