At our Women’s Retreat this past weekend, our speaker, Megan, introduced us to the practice of Lectio Divina.
Lectio Divina, literally meaning “divine reading,” is an ancient practice of praying the Scriptures. During Lectio Divina, the practitioner listens to the text of the Bible with the “ear of the heart,” as if he or she is in conversation with God, and God is suggesting the topics for discussion. The method of Lectio Divina includes moments of reading (lectio), reflecting on (meditatio), responding to (oratio) and resting in (contemplatio) the Word of God with the aim of nourishing and deepening one’s relationship with the Divine.
Guidelines for Scholastic Lectio Divina
Steps: Read, Reflect, Respond, Rest.
Step One: Read the passage with the “ear of your heart.” What phrase, sentence or even one word stands out to you?
Step Two: Read the passage again and Reflect on the word of God. Be aware of what touches you, a thought or reflection that is meaningful. Allow a minute or two of silence.
Step Three: Read the passage again and Respond spontaneously to the word of God. Be aware of any prayer that rises up within that expresses the experience. Allow a minute or two of silence.
Step Four: Read the passage a final time and Rest in the word, reflect or pray and allow God to speak in the silence. Allow three or four minutes of silence.
To Extend the Practice: After the resting, take the phrase, sentence, or word into your daily activity and listen to it, reflect on it, pray over it, and rest in it as time allows during the day. Allow it to become part of you.
Read more about Lectio Divina here.