From God's fullness we have all received, grace upon grace
Shared Lectio Divina, February 2021

Shared Lectio Divina, February 2021

Since April 2020, I have been jointly hosting a shared Lectio group on Tuesday evenings. The following are my reflections only, during the prayer session and as I wrote them up. Please see my separate commentary and leaflet for more information about shared Lectio.

Reflections for 2 February | 9 February | 16 February | 23 February | the whole collection

2 February

Gospel reading: Luke 2.[22-24] 25-35 [36-40] Candlemas

Words: amazed, guided by the Spirit


The Spirit simply guided Simeon to go to the Temple, something he probably did everyday anyway. Nothing grand, challenging, crazy, scary or uncomfortable Just the simple action of being faithful, present, following his usual practice.

Simeon’s relationship with the Spirit was so close – the Spirit rested on him, revealed to him, guided him. I get a sense of still, calm, trust and faith. And underlying it a single-heartedness.

That is something I desire, but feel far from, always wondering what big thing God wants me to do (and fearing what it might be), when it is simply the simple, small, faithful things that are important, and simply being attentive to the Spirit’s nudges.

9 February

Gospel reading: Mark 7.1-8 [9-13]

Words: they noticed


The Gospels often portray the Pharisees as watching or noticing Jesus, in order to trip him up. So what sort of eye do I have? Is it one that notices in order to judge, or in order to have compassion? It could be as simple as grammar, or bags of dog poo, or a person who doesn’t quite ‘fit’ or is different from me. (Being afraid of difference is linked to judging, I think.)

Observing and noticing are not bad. It’s what we do with them. Jesus wasn’t saying: ‘Do not honour God with your lips,’ but ‘It is good that “This people honours me with their lips” and their hearts need to be near me too.’ Observing traditions is good, if it means observing God’s traditions.

16 February

Gospel reading: Mark 8.14-21

Words: broken pieces, remember


The first words I chose were an echo of 5 January, the feeding of the 5,000, but on the second reading the word ‘remember’ was the one that really winked at me. Although actually it is related to the first because it is good to remember past reflections, lessons, gifts from the Spirit.

To remember is to bring the past to life again, to bring it into the present. This is I think the sense of the Greek word anamnesis, both ‘Do this in memory of me’ and the recollection of God’s saving deeds.

Remembering how I was, the events and experiences as they unfolded, enables me to see patterns, changes in me, God at work. It is linked to the understanding that Jesus also speaks of. It also means that it is important to pay attention and take note, so I do remember, so I can understand.

So gathering up the broken pieces of the past helps me to understand in the present and feeds me in the present, and gives me hope and nourishment for the future.

23 February

Gospel reading: Matthew 6.7-15 Lord’s Prayer

Words: when you are praying


The German word here is ‘wenn’, that is, ‘when’ in the sense of ‘whenever’. So Jesus is assuming that the disciples, the crowd gathered around, we reading and hearing these words today are all continuing to pray. It is not just a one-off.

He’s assuming that we want, or are drawn, to pursue a continued relationship with God and has given us this prayer as a pattern to help us.

As I’ve been using it in the last ~9 months, it has been a kind of Lectio, giving up different gems each time, whether that is ‘our’, that is we are praying this prayer together, corporately; or ‘trespasses’ and my sense of boundaries; or ‘thy Kingdom come’ in me and my own soul.

So it has become and is continuing to become a beautiful gift, for which I give thanks.