Christian Practices

Dr. Christine Jerritt led us in worship and time following to look at a number of practices that deepen our faith.  Christine helped us to reflect on the deeper meanings of singing our faith, witnessing God's presence in our lives and passing our stories to other generations.  We also spent time reflecting on what we learn from eating together and practicing hospitality as Jesus taught us to do.  She reflected on how learning to trust God's abundance is different that our cultural norms of always wanting more.  Hospitality means thinking about other's experiences and reaching out. 

Finally, Dr. Jerritt introduced us to a practice known as Lectio Divina to develop personal reflections with a scripture passage.

The first step: (Lectio)- read the scripture passage (or a portion of it if it is long), preferably out loud three times (or more) slowly.  Pay attention to the words or phrases that speak to you.  Some unexpected word or phrase may emerge as you repeatedly read the passage.

Step two: Meditatio: Meditate on the word or phrase that has drawn your attention as you read the passage in the lectio stage.  Let it resonate with your thoughts, hopes, memories, desires, concerns and ideas.

Step three: Oratio: Pray the words or phrases that you have been meditating on.  Enter into a dialogue, an unhurried, loving conversation with God.  Interact with God as you would with one who you know loves and accepts you.  Offer to God the experiences that emerged in your meditation.  Let the words or phrases from the scripture text speak to those experiences, with God's healing grace.

Contemplatio: Rest in God's presence, allowing yourself to receive God's transforming love.

Try this practice reading the 23rd Psalm as we did.

The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures:
He leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul:
He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for His name' sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil:
For thou art with me;
Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies;
Thou annointest my head with oil;
My cup runneth over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the House of the Lord forever.