There are many different ways to read the Bible.
In seminary, every single paper I wrote required me
Part of our school’s philosophy
The application portion of each seminary paper was always my favorite part. I’m not a fan knowledge for the sake of knowledge. I want to do something with the things I learn. I really want to apply what I’ve been taught.
So, while I was creating our latest Challenge I started to think about one of the tools in my Christian formation utility belt for studying Scripture. It’s a practice called Lectio Divina.
I first learned about Lectio Divina early in my ministry days, I think at a youth retreat I had taken my teens to years before seminary.
What’s Great About Lectio Divina?
It’s a really interesting spiritual practice that challenges you to allow room for the chosen Scripture to wash over your heart and mind.
Lectio Divina is about reading with the Holy Spirit in mind. It’s a prayerful method for reading Scripture.
At it’s core, Lectio Divina is about closely reading a passage of Scripture while paying attention to the words and phrases that specifically speak to you or are brought to your attention.
And what’s great about using Lectio Divina for studying a passage is that it requires you to intentionally slow down and focus on the words.
It forces you to stop and see how Scripture is aligning with your life right now. It brings to light what God is speaking to you in that very moment.
It’s also a good idea to mix up your approach to Bible study from time to time to create new paths for allowing God to speak to us.
How Does Lectio Divina Work?
Without getting super technical on all the details about Lectio Divina, I want to go over the basic process to help you start implementing it into your quiet time, or even for our current C
- Select a passage from Scripture to study through Lectio Divina. It could be as small as a single verse, but don’t pick too large of a passage while starting out. Typically Lectio Divina is done with 3-10 verses of a section of Scripture.
- Begin by quieting your mind and heart as you open yourself up to God’s presence with you.
- Read the passage in its entirety. Even if you are alone, read aloud, to incorporate your sense of hearing.
- As you read, pay attention to what sticks out to you. Perhaps it’s a word or a phrase. This is a very important part of Lectio Divina. Hold onto that phrase and continue reading until you finish the passage.
- Reread the passage for a second time, keeping your phrase or word in the front of your mind as you read. However, continue to remain open to new phrases or words that come to your attention.
- For a third time, read the passage, continuing to hold onto your phrase or word as you read.
- Take your word or phrase and bring it before the Lord in this final phase of the exercise. Ask God to help you better understand this word or phrase, and what He wants you to take from this reading. Talk to Him about this phrase or word and what it means to you and how it applies to your life today. Allow this portion of the exercise to be organic and open as you allow space and room for God to speak to your heart in this way.
And that’s it!
It’s really a neat way to read Scripture for your heart, for soul care. God speaks to us in so many different ways and Lectio Divina is just another way to help you hear His voice.
Our Free Lectio Divina Workbook
I’ve also created a workbook to help you practice Lectio Divina. I’m really excited about this freebie because I think it will really help you with studying Scripture through the means of Lectio Divina, thus helping you better hear God’s voice speaking to you through His word.
To get your free Lectio Divina workbook, simply enter your best email below. You’ll have to check your email in a moment to confirm that you want the workbook, after which you’ll be able to download it as a PDF file.