We have loved our adventures through the joys and freedoms of the Spiritual Disciplines. Sarah Yardley loved leading this Sunday (even through the ironies of discussing Solitude and Silence…in community). If you’d any of her notes, feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org…and if you wanted to try out this new practice of really listening in silence to God’s Word, consider the suggestion below from the book Hearing God by Dallas Willard:
Steps for practicing Lectio Divina
Silence – silencio
Prepare yourself to receive from God. Slow down, relax, and intentionally release the chaos and noise in your mind to him. Close your eyes and breath out slowly. Ask God to give you an openness to hear from the Spirit. Take as long as you need.
Read – lectio
Read the passage slowly, allowing the words to resonate and settle in your heart. Enter into the scene in your imagination. Imagination is a God-given gift. Envision the scene. Carefully watch the people. Listen to how they interact. If the passage is not a scene but rather a promise, counsel, or exhortation, then soak yourself in its message & meaning.
Now that the words are familiar to you, read the passage again. This time, also listen with the ear of your heart for a word, phrase, or detail of the story that shimmers or stands out to you. Do not choose this yourself. Let the Spirit bring it to you.
Reflect – meditatio
Read the passage again slowly. As you do so and for a few minutes afterward, linger on the word or phrase that stood out to you. Sit with the word or phrase and savor it as a word of God for you. Why do you think these words resonated with you? Ask God, How does this connect with my life today? What do I need to know or be or do?
Pray – oratio
Read the passage one last time, listening attentively for anything else God might have to say to you. Allow the Scripture to lead you into a response of prayer. Do not censure your thoughts or requests. Let them flow out spontaneously and freely before the Lord who loves you. Hold nothing back. Respond to God’s invitation to you.
Contemplation – contemplatio
Deeply receive God’s Word and rest in his presence and love. Give yourself some time to wait and be still before you reenter life as usual. Take God’s Word to you with you throughout the day. God loves to give to his children; rest in the beauty & hope of that.
Prepared by Keas Keasler Material taken from Dallas Willard, Hearing God Adele Calhoun, Spiritual Disciplines Handbook