The four steps are simply known as read, reflect, respond, and rest. After you select a short text (or use the John 17 passage below), read the passage out loud four times. Follow the instructions below:
First Reading: Allow yourself to settle into the words. Read the text out loud, if you can, very slowly and clearly. Pause for a breath or two.
Second Reading: Notice any word or phrase that stands out to you.
Third Reading: Reflect on this word or phrase until it engages your body, heart, and awareness of the physical and unseen world around you.
Fourth Reading: Respond with a prayer or expression of what you have experienced, inhaling love and connection, exhaling out worry and tension.
For those willing, please tell us the word or phrase that you chose. How did that word feel in your head, heart, and entire body?
Each time you practice Lectio Divina, begin by reminding yourself:
The Holy Spirit is the dynamic source at the center of Lectio Divina
–the spirit prays in us with unspeakable groanings
Lectio Divina tends to conversation or to aspirations
Each step is relating to each level of our being (read, reflect, respond, rest)
The four steps are four movements:
- movement from the words
- movement to the thoughts about the words
- movement to the feelings that arise from the thoughts
- movement to communion (union) with the Divine