Tonight at Bible study, we did a little something different. We practiced Lectio Divina, an ancient form of scripture reading that asks the question, "What is God saying TO ME today through scripture?" Rather than an in-depth, verse-by-verse study that breaks the passage down to look at it historically, literarily, theologically, et cetera, we simply read the same passage several times, asking God to tell us what He wants us to hear.
First, we read the scripture through slowly--not rushing through the words but letting them soak in deeply. We listened for one word or phrase that stood out to us. We sat in silence for a bit, contemplating the word or phrase that God had given us from the passage of scripture. Then we went around the circle and shared with the group what that word or prhase was.
Next, we read the same scripture again slowly. This time, we asked God to tell us something about that word or phrase. "What does this mean TO ME--IN MY LIFE today?" We sat in silence, contemplating this after the scripture was read. Then one by one we shared what the word or phrase meant to us.
After this, group members were invited to share insights into what we perceived God's word might be for each individual, based on the word or phrase that stood out to them.
Finally, we read the same scripture once more. This time as we listened, we asked God to show us what God would have us TO DO about the word or phrase He had given us. This way, we did not leave our meeting without having some action to take in our lives.
It was a great time in the Lord. God spoke to each of us in a different way.
You can do Lectio Divina (Divine Reading) by yourself or in a group. Here are a few links to get you started in learning about this great way of soaking in God's word: