The Very Ancient Art of Praying, practiced at one time by all Christians, is the technique known as Lectio Divina, a slow contemplative praying of the Scriptures which enables the Bible, to become a means of union with God. This is a modified personal version but just as effective.

 

Preparation: Seek a quiet place where you can maintain a comfortable but attentive position. If time concerns you, set a timer for 10 to 20 minutes and forget about it. The timer will alert you when its time to stop. Choose a very short section of Scripture, such as the Gospel reading for Sunday or weekday liturgy. Begin your prayer time with a prayer to the Holy Spirit and a moment of silence. The idea is to open your heart to God's word.

 

Reading (Lectio) Read the short passage of Scripture slowly. If you like, whisper the words or read it aloud. You may read it more than once, gradually allowing some particular word or short phrase to touch your heart. Don't rush.

 

Meditation (Meditatio) Ponder the meaning of your chosen word or phrase. Think of what these words or phrases meant to the people in the original story. What might God be telling you today in this phrase? Why do you relate to this particular phrase or word? Is there something comforting about it? Is there something unpleasant that God wants you to face?

 

Personal Response (Oratio, Prayer) In a simple way, tell God your thoughts, your feelings, your response to the Scripture passage. You might ask God for strength, forgiveness, peace, or whatever you need.

 

Contemplation (Contemplatio) Simply rest quietly, but attentively, in God's presence. Rest in the presence of the One who has used His word as a means of inviting you to accept His transforming embrace. No one who has ever been in love needs to be reminded that there are moments in a loving relationship when words are unnecessary. It is the same in our relationship with God. Wordless, quiet rest in the One who loves us.

 

(Contemplatio) We let go of our own words, and simply enjoy the experience of being in the presence of God. Gently dwell within Gods presence and allow God to dwell within you.

 

Other Forms of Meditative Prayer

*Liturgy of the Hours

*The Prayerful Rosary

*Jesus Prayer

*La Pieta

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