The fruits of lectio divina
Prayer should change us. Here are some fruits we should expect from praying with Scripture, described by some experts on prayer (bold emphasis added).
First, from Saint Maximus the Confessor (580–662 A.D.):
“The Words of God, if pronounced by rote and not heard, have no resonance in the actions of those who merely speak them. But rather, if they are pronounced and put into action, they have the power to dispel demons and help people build God’s dwelling in their hearts and make progress in works of justice.”
From an address to young people by Pope John Paul II:
“I would like in particular to recall and recommend the ancient tradition of Lectio Divina: the diligent reading of Sacred Scripture accompanied by prayer brings about that intimate dialogue in which the person reading hears God who is speaking, and in praying, responds to him with trusting openness of heart. If it is effectively promoted, this practice will bring to the Church — I am convinced of it—a new spiritual springtime … It should never be forgotten that the Word of God is a lamp for our feet and a light for our path” (Psalm 119:105).
From an address to young people by Pope Benedict XVI:
“I urge you to become familiar with the Bible, and to have it at hand so that it can be your compass pointing out the road to follow.”
“The diligent reading of Sacred Scripture accompanied by prayer brings about that intimate dialogue in which the person reading hears God who is speaking, and in praying, responds to him with trusting openness of heart.”
And finally, these are the closing words from the “Instrumentum Laboris” preceding the Synod of Bishops on “The Word of God in the Life and Mission of the Church”:
Lectio Divina is not confined to a few, well-committed individuals among the faithful nor to a group of specialists in prayer. Instead, Lectio Divina is a necessary element of an authentic Christian life in a secularized world, which needs contemplative, attentive, critical and courageous people who, at times, must make totally new, untried choices. These particular undertakings will not be purely routine nor come from public opinion but will result from hearing the Word of the Lord and perceiving the mysterious stirring of the Holy Spirit in the heart.