"Praying with Scriptures"

I was browsing the web and came upon notes on the Spiritual Exercises, and one of the criteria stated that is would be an asset if the student can “Pray with Scriptures”.

Does anyone know anything about this.?


Well, I can tell you what “praying with Scripture” means to me.

Part of my morning prayer is to read the daily readings and try to meditate on them. Almost invariably, there will be some verse or story that has some deep meaning for me.

Sometimes, I might even copy a verse and carry it around with me during the day and refer back to it during some quiet time. I call all of this… prayer.

The following is a description of lectio divina, Latin for “divine reading.”

Prayer is a two-way conversation: God speaks to us, and we respond to Him. God speaks to us through Scripture — like letters from the Holy Spirit! Lectio divina is a simple way to pray with Scripture. Saint Benedict taught his monks to pray in this way 1500 years ago.

Getting ready: Set aside a few minutes, find a quiet, comfortable place, choose a short Scripture passage. It can be a Psalm (or a section of a longer Psalm, not too long), a short passage from one of the Gospels, etc. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you.

There are four stages to lectio divina:

]**“Lectio”*** — reading. Read the passage. Re-read it slowly, pausing from time to time. Notice any phrases that appeal to you or attract your attention.

]**“Meditatio”*** — meditation. Mull over the passage. The words that caught your attention may contain God’s special message for you. Spend extra time thinking about their meaning. What is God saying to your heart?

]**“Oratio”*** — prayer. Respond to God’s word in silent prayer. What do you want to say back to God? The passage you just read may inspire you to thank Him, praise Him, tell Him you are sorry, ask Him for something you need, make a resolution …

]**“Contemplatio”*** — contemplation. Just rest in the presence of God for a few minutes. No words are needed. Just love Him, and let Him love you!
When you have been doing this for a while, the four stages may become a little less distinct from each other (kind of overlapping or blending together). You may also find yourself going back to the passage to meditate on another word or phrase. It’s all very personal; there’s no right or wrong way; if it brings you closer to God you’re doing just fine.

Thanks MaryAnna and PhilotheaZ., that’s great and I printed your posts. :slight_smile:

I need to admit I have problems with some Scriptures. 2 are :

I avoid reading in Acts of the overreaction and overkill of Aninias and his wife, especially his wife, which was a miscarriage in every sense of the word. It’s too much to ask anyone to view this as just, and that by the very spirit of Mercy that is the foundation of this Church.

Solomon is a problem and is a case out of character of his status. Using trumped up laws that favor men, in the hopes that by it they can’t be labeled as lustful but courting, having not the least difficulty with an overactive libido having 50 wives, bed hopping all nite to keep them all contented, and 200 children to bare out that fact, so his advice on restraint and proper caring of a wife in Wis(or Prov can’t remember) 2 is empty and so I take it tongue in cheek. (In fact, if he brought these words to his wives for comment, I’m sure he would not find a consensus. It would have been nice to see some of their opinions too.)

Generally, any request in OT for God to smite his enemy is hard to read also.

So I hope questions and opinions are acceptable as well. Maybe God left Solomon’s “wisdom” here to dare anyone such as me to question it. :smiley: Oh,Oh!!!


I hope this is not off topic and I get wacked by the moderator. Perhaps if I speak quietly they won’t hear.

I have a number of particular prayers that I say every morning; St. Benedict, Consecration to the Sacred Heart, Blessed Mother, etc. I also do read my Bible every night. I will always read a chapter or two. I primarily stay with the NT but every now and again I will go to the OT when directed there by something I read.

Someone told me that I was wrong to use the words written by others in praying that it was an “imperfect” way of praying. We are supposed to sit in silence and let God talk to us.

How does that stack up against Priests and other Religious saying the Divine Office? I also do love the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin which I say daily.

Comments would be helpful.:confused:

The two forms of praying with Scripture that I’m familiar with are lectio divina and the Ignatian prayer of the imagination.

You can read about lectio here: valyermo.com/ld-art.html

You can read about Ignatian prayer here: creighton.edu/CollaborativeMinistry/Imagination/Intro.html

If that “Someone” meant that you shouldn’t use the Scriptures in praying, they are absolutely wrong. That is what priests and religious do when praying the Divine Office, since the Divine Office comes mostly from Scripture (the Psalms and other readings from Scripture) along with certain other prayers. Scripture is God’s Word, and it is one of the main ways God talks to us.

And there is no problem in using other prayers written by other people, especially prayers that come from the long tradition of the Church. However, they should not be the ONLY way we pray. We should indeed leave some of our prayer time open for sitting in silence with God and listening for His “still small voice.”

Thank you PhilotheaZ, that puts my mind at peace.:blessyou:


Thanks again! I come in early to mass to read the missile supplied by our parish giving such information, but something new to me all the same.


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