THEME: A Living Rule
BREATH PRAYER: Father, set me on a path that leads me closer to Your heart.
- In a journal, note the day, time, and place you’re sitting.
- Open with a few moments of silence. Rest, and breathe deeply.
- Complete the following sentence in your journal: Today, I feel ________________.
- Read these words slowly (aloud or silently):
“Turn my eyes from watching what is worthless; give me life in your ways.” Psalm 139:37
Pray this week’s breath prayer and pause for a few moments of silence.
Read Matthew 13:3-9, 18-23 two times, pausing in between readings to let the words soak into your mind and heart. When you have finished reading, take some time to answer the questions below in your journal.
- The seed sown on the path was snatched away because of a lack of understanding by the listener. What do you think Jesus meant by “understanding”? How might you distinguish someone who truly “understands” the message of the kingdom, versus someone who merely hears it?
- Whether we are like the rocky ground or the good soil, our initial experience upon receiving the message of the Kingdom is the same: joy. What are some of the differences between those who are rocky soil and those who are good soil, and why is the initial “joy” of hearing the message insufficient?
- What are some of the “worries of this life” and “deceitfulness of wealth” that you may face in your own life? How have you experienced these things “choking out” the good news of God’s kingdom?
- Jesus said that, when the seed that is the message of the Kingdom falls on good soil, that it produces a crop many times larger than what was sown. In your own words, what do you think Jesus meant by “produce a crop”?
- How might a Rule of Life keep you planted in good soil, rather than the path, rocky ground, or among the thorns?
Digging Deeper: As you develop your Rule of Life, consider integrating some form of engaging with the Bible regularly. There are many ways to do this, and some may be more helpful for you than others in your current stage of life. In addition to traditional question-and-answer Bible study, you may also want to explore Lectio Divina, narrative entry, meditation, or other forms as well. If one of these forms is to become part of your Rule of Life, decide when and how often you will engage in this practice. Over time, feel free to hone your Rule of Life by changing up the way you study God’s Word.
Summary: Write in your journal a brief summary (five sentences or less) of your practice.
Closing: Thank God, the generous farmer, for bringing the message of the Kingdom to you and for living out the good news of the Kingdom for you. Father, set me on a path that leads me closer to your heart.