Miniblog #251: Reflections on Lectio Divina
Lectio Divina, or “Divine Reading,” is beautiful but it doesn’t “work” for me–at least not as it’s intended. Like watering a dry garden bed, going over the biblical text slowly and with repetition does help with saturation and is thereby life-giving. Scripture is not treated as texts to be studied, but as the Living Word to be experienced. Each of the four times reading through the passage has a specific purpose. The first reading is about taking notice of whatever captures your attention in the passage or in your inner experience. The second is about listening for a single word or phrase that particularly strikes you. The third is about listening to how the passage seems to touch your life. The final reading asks what the passage or the Holy Spirit might be inviting you to do or change. There is reflective silence after each. As has been mentioned in a recent blog post, however, I don’t neatly compartmentalize heart, mind, and spirit. I synthesize. That’s why I don’t like the dichotomy between studying the text and treating it as the Living Word. That’s also why, as it finally dawned on me this morning at church, Lectio Divina has never made the least bit of sense. Its structure is foreign, even contrary, to the way I’m wired. Yet more than ever I understand its value. Not only for myself in terms of saturation, but especially for others who do compartmentalize more. So, I think we’ll start using it during University Abbey’s Celtic evening prayer every other Tuesday night.