This is the title from M. Basil Pennington’s 2002 book where he shares the fruit of his own lectio divina – the ancient practise of sacred reading, of which he writes – “If each day a word of the Lord can truly come alive for us and can form our mind and heart, we will have that mind of Christ.” As someone who approaches life with the energy of the Enneagram five space these are wonderful words of hope. I’m all to familiar with how my mind can help or hinder my growth as a follower of Jesus’s Way of love. My mind is the source of my greatest joys and greatest fears. To be able to have the “mind of Christ” is one of my greatest hopes.
Lectio has been a meaningful, blessed spiritual practice of mine for years now. I’ve enjoyed hearing from Scripture rather than pushing my questions and ideas onto the text; trying to figure out what it means – in the original language, for the original listeners…all that hermeneutical stuff. Bible study is important and interesting AND it’s good to know there are other ways to read sacred text. Maybe as I got older I needed something for my heart as much as my head. For some reason when I read Basil’s words – “I…eagerly wait to hear what he has to say to me.” my soul said “I want that too. Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.” A new reality was birthed in my soul and I now really believe that the Holy One will talk to me, especially in my time of lectio. I’m not expecting an audible voice but some kind of communication through the text or whatever else I’m “listening” to. It feels more than a hope but a definite possibility. My part in the conversation is to show up, listen and the One who spoke the universe into existence will speak to me. This reality has made my morning times of reading the Bible, using the lectio divina method, something I look forward to, rather than something I HAVE to do to keep me properly on the Way – a dogmatic discipline.
Basil also writes, “I am grateful that I have had the joy and privilege … of sharing with my fellow travelers some of the words the Lord has spoken to me…And the feedback has indicted that the Lord has spoken them there also, creating bonds among us that have multiplied our joy in the word.” These words have inspired me to blog more often. I’m not anticipating the same results – wisdom or response – of a Basil Pennington and yet I feel more encouraged to write what I hear with the ear of my heart. If it can encourage others that they can personally hear from the Holy One, creates bonds and multiplies joy for anyone, it will be worth taking the risk of putting myself out there. That “showing up”… which is what a healthy “five” can do, with practise. 2021 will be an interesting year for many reasons and I wanted to share this additional motivation for blogging right off the top. Here we go … thanks be to God. TBTG
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