A lot of my best stuff is realized during lectio divina. Do you know what this is? It’s the practice of “divine reading” the ancient church fathers practiced. Rather than reading a chapter or even a section of the Bible, you meditate on a single verse, or a couple of verses.
You read it. You recite it. You ruminate on it. Then you receive what the Holy Spirit, your divine Teacher, is showing you about it. In this way, the Word moves from your head to your heart and thus becomes enfleshed, according to our beloved Henri Nouwen.
So, if you see a post here that begins with a short Scripture quotation, you can deduce with pretty good certainty that this was a verse for my lectio divina, and the natterings that follow will be what I received from my meditation on it. You may want to try this yourself! It has opened so many wonders of Scripture and God’s love to me, I highly recommend it.
Onward. My verse was …
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:3 MEV)
This apparent oxymoron — poor in spirit ,happy? — has actually become reality in my life. In the darkest time, when I was poorest in spirit, when I was practically dead, or we could say dead to every hope and dream, that’s when I finally and truly connected with Jesus.
And how happy I am!
His love washed over me in such a fulfilling and genuine way… I came into contact with One who knows me intimately and loves me endlessly. It is more joy than I could ever have imagined. But I could not get here back when I was young and beautiful and happy and hopeful. It took going down into the grave to truly be resurrected.
That is a good thought for Lent … it’s the dead who are eligible for resurrection, so if you feel dead right now, this may in fact be your lucky day.