Practice Lectio Divina

Lectio divina, Latin for “divine reading,” is an ancient method of praying to promote union with God. It is slow, non-product oriented, contemplative, and filled with silence. Its outward appearances might be a gentler spirit, a passionate heart, greater compassion, love and peace-making. Consider making lectio divina part of your day every day.
Steps for practicing this prayer form:
  • Read the passage below slowly with attention, savoring each word. (lectio)
  • Reflect on the meaning and message of the text for you. (meditatio)
  • Pray with reverence and gratefulness. (oratio)
  • Rest in God’s abiding presence. (contemplatio)
  • Be a prophetic witness in the world. (actio)

Aleph:
How the gold has grown dim; how the pure gold is changed!
The holy stones lie scattered at the head of every street.

Beth:
The precious children of Zion, worth their weight in fine gold,
are reckoned as earthen pots, the work of a potter's hands.

Heth:
The steadfast love of God never ceases,
mercies never come to an end,
they are new every morning; great is this faithfulness.
"God is my portion, therefore my hope will not be in vain."

Teth:
God is good to those who wait; to those who do not waver.
It is good that we should wait quietly for the salvation of God.
It is good for us that we bear the yoke in our youth.

(Lamentation 4:1,2; 3:22-27)

Let us go, therefore, with confidence into the presence of God
that we may obtain mercy and find favor in time of need.
For every representative taken from among us
is appointed to act on our behalf
in the things that relate to God.
They offer gifts and sacrifices for sin
and have compassion on those who are ignorant and err,
because they also are encompassed with weakness.
So too, Christ did not seek glory but was chosen by God who said,
"You are my Beloved; this day have I begotten you."
God also said, "You are the Anointed One according to the order of Melchizedek."
Though anointed, Jesus learned obedience through suffering,
became the source of eternal salvation,
and was appointed by God as our representative according to the order of Melchizedek.

(Hebrews 4:16-5:10)

Heth:

God determined to lay in ruins the wall of the daughter of Zion;
marked it off by the line; restrained not from destroying;
caused rampart and wall to lament, they languish together.

Teth:

Her gates have sunk into the ground;
God has ruined and broken her bars;
her ruler and leaders are among the nations;
the law is no more,
and her prophets obtain no vision from God.

Aleph:

I am the one who has seen affliction under the rod of God's wrath;
God has driven me and brought me into darkness
without any light;
against me alone God turns again and again the whole day long.

Beth:

God has made my flesh and my skin waste away,
and broken my bones;
has besieged and enveloped me with bitterness and tribulation;
has made me dwell in darkness like the dead of long ago.

(Lamentation 2:8-9; 3:1-6)

Let these be the words of God’s redeemed,
“O give thanks to God who is good,
whose love endures forever.”

God rises to shouts of joy, amid trumpet blasts.
With full voice sing praise.
God is Creator of all the earth,
caring for all nations.
With all your heart
sing praise to God who abides in glory.

Like a shepherd, God feeds the flock
and gathers the lambs,
carrying them tenderly,
leading the ewes with care.

All nations will come to worship you
and glorify your name.
You are great and work wonders;
you alone are God.

May God’s blessings be yours
all the days of your life!

The good take pity and are generous;
they conduct themselves with honor.
The just shall be in everlasting remembrance,
exalted in glory.

Be mindful of your promise
by which you gave me hope.
This is my comfort in sorrow —
that your promise gives me life.

I thank you, God, for your justice.
I praise your name unceasingly.

God fixes the number of the stars
and calls each one by name.
Such wisdom is beyond measure.

The words of God are pure,
like silver from the furnace,
seven times refined.

O God, let your love come upon me,
the saving help of your promise.

You are fair among the people of the earth;
graciousness comes from within.
for God has blest you forever.

O people, bless the Holy One; let the song of praise resound.

Let them thank God for such great love, for the marvels done on their behalf. God satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.

God is eternal, the creator of all that is. Hope in God! Your strength will be renewed. You will soar like an eagle, run and not grow weary.

Your commands have been my delight; these I have loved. I will respect your commands and honor your statutes.

Blest are you, O God, you have lavished me with your love.

Your strength is from the Holy One. In splendor and glory, arise for the cause of truth.

Indeed, how good is the Holy One, steadfast in love. Such faithfulness endures forever.

You heavens, sun, moon, and stars, all the universe, bless God. God of Creation, we praise you forever.

Praised be God, the Eternal One, who has made us holy in Christ, given us every blessing.

Come and see the wonders of God; awe-inspiring are these deeds.

Pour out your blessings, O God, upon the good and the faithful.

It is God who sets captives free,
who gives sight to the blind
and raises those who grieve.

Teach me to follow the path that leads to you.

Let God be praised!
Let God alone be praised!
The splendor of God's holy name
reaches beyond earth and sky.

Jesus chose to be emptied,
taking the form of a servant,
being born in our likeness.

Tell all those of future generations
that such is the God who saves,
who lives forever and always,
the One who guides us in safe paths.

Love God, all you faithful ones,
for God sustains you.

I will espouse you to myself forever.
I will espouse you with integrity and justice,
in tenderness and mercy.
I will espouse you in fidelity,
and you shall know that I am God.

O my Strength,
it is you to whom I turn,
for you are my refuge,
the God who shows me love.

Chant praises to God, all you chosen ones,
Alleluia!
all who worship God reverently, great and small.
Alleluia! Alleluia!

Give thanks to the Source of all Blessing.
All the beauty of the earth, bless God.
God of Creation, we praise you forever.

This is the day God made;
let us rejoice and be glad.
God grants blessing and salvation.
Blest be the one who comes in God’s name.

We have been given the wisdom
to understand fully the mystery,
the plan that was made known in Christ,
to be carried out in the fullness of time —
to bring all things in the heavens and on earth,
gathered into one in Christ.

Come, listen,
all you who reverence God.
I will recount what has been done for me.
I will extol the Holy One,
with praise always on my tongue.

I will praise you, O God, with all my heart; I will recount all your wonders and sing the glory of your name.

Like sheep you brought forth your people, guiding them like a flock in the desert. You led them safely with nothing to fear, while the sea engulfed their foes. You brought them to your holy land and divided it for their heritage.

Let there be rejoicing and gladness for all who seek you. Let all who love you ever say, "To God be glory and praise."

Give thanks for the goodness of God whose steadfast love endures forever. Who can recount God's many deeds? Who can sing enough praise?

O God, be gracious and bless us; shed your light on us, for you alone give life. Let your ways be known upon the earth that all may acclaim you as God.

I love you, O God, my strength. It is in you that I place my trust. You are my rock, my helper. You are worthy of all praise. I call on you that I may be safe.

A song of justice and kindness I sing to you, O God. I shall walk in the way of integrity.

The heavens declare your wonders; the assembly of your holy ones praises you. Who can compare with you, O God? Who is like you?

Constantly seek the holy presence. Remember the wonders done for us, the miracles, the judgments spoken.

How precious is your love. All creation finds refuge in the shelter of your wings.

You are God, yet you care for the poor, the proud you know from afar. Though I walk in the midst of affliction, you give me life and keep me safe.

Let us exalt God. Let us praise God's holy name forever.

Pages