TO THE BIBLICAL NARRATIVE
Entering into the story…
Rather than trying to write God into our stories, we would be wiser to sit patiently with our Father and let Him tell us His… We must let His story rewrite ours and sweep us up into something much greater than ourselves – Mike Wilkerson
Read the passage and imagine the scene as if you were a movie director. You are working with the characters. Often, we do not enter scripture with our humanity intact. We do not dignify the characters we find there by giving them their humanity in return. The goal of Lectio Divina is to meditate on the scene we find there. To allow the characters to speak to us by imagining the scene as if we are standing there too. Ask Holy Spirit to make the scenario come to life. As you read use all your senses to visualise everything in the scene…
How do the two disciples look as they walk along the dusty road to Emmaus? How does their stress, worry and concern show on their crumpled faces? Are they hunched over? How would you be feeling if you were in their shoes? Imagine their surprise as a stranger appears in their midst.. are they annoyed by His questions about why they’re depressed? How can He not know what has happened in Jerusalem, how the Messiah they followed is now dead? Do you ever feel these same human emotions? Do you feel a measure of disappointment with God today? Can you relate to how they feel – their frame of mind as they walk together? Disappointment, despair and discontentment are very real in the moment.
As Jesus starts to explain the timeline of the Bible, remember that He is using only the Old Testament to show all the scriptures that point to the Messiah. Which images does he point to as a sign of His coming? How does He help these lost disciples to find themselves in the story, God’s story? Their own predicament as they have lost sight of what God is doing right now in them? As he shares His time with them and walks alongside them in a human resurrected body, how does His humanity minister to them? How do their hearts burn within them as He talks?
When he pretends to begin walking on how desperate were they to keep this encouraging friend for a little longer? Please, stay on for a meal, it is getting dark… He agrees to come in and they reward their new friend with a meal. Imagine the moment that He blessed the food, reaches for the bread and breaks it… All at once, their eyes opened! How could they have not recognised Him before? It is the Messiah, their beloved Rabbi is back from the dead, resurrected! As soon as the realisation dawned on them, he disappeared! What a shock!
Immediately, they left for Jerusalem! How fast did they walk now, their energy, body, soul and spirit quickened. How alive they felt in comparison to the trudging they had done before, Knowing what they had seen before in His death. They now also are witnesses to His Life, renewed, resurrected. How does this change everything for them as they follow their footsteps with a rising hope rather than the depths of despair? How would they tell the others? They could not wait. They would hurry back from Jerusalem, knowing that this was not the end but a brand new beginning…
They asked each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road?”
The Disciple’s Concerns
1) Prepare: Close your eyes, breathe, focus your mind, and ask God to enter into this time of prayer with you. Ask God to speak to you through this image.
2) Lectio (read): Open your eyes and scan the image. Note what draws your interest, but continue to scan the whole image. Close and rest your eyes a minute.
3) Mediatio (meditate): Open your eyes and let your eyes be led. Focus on just the part of the image that caught your eyes and name it. Close your eyes, seeing that piece of the image in your mind.
4) Oratio (pray): Open your eyes and look again at the piece of the image that caught your eye. Allow it to bring forth a word, image, or emotion. Close and rest your eyes.
5) Contemplatio (contemplation): Open your eyes and gaze at the whole image. What is God speaking to you today through this image? How will you respond to Him? Spend time processing that with God. Pray or journal about it.
Matt Rawlin’s Article:
Being Spiritual, Being Human:
Sometimes I encounter writers and speakers who describe us as human beings on a spiritual journey. I think this is true and have used the same language myself. But I think it is equally true that we are spiritual beings on a human journey. Both journeys are crucial, and each should complement the other. Any religion or spirituality that seeks to make us less than, more than, or other than human is dangerous. Spirituality can and should be in the service of becoming more deeply human. This might surprise you. After all, the human and spiritual journeys are often presented as diametrically opposed to each other, and so it is quite understandable if you have tended to think of the spiritual journey as helping you move beyond the limitations of humanity. During a recent lecture I was giving on these things, a woman sitting in the front row looked puzzled and upset. When I paused for dialogue, she expressed her confusion by saying, “I thought that the more spiritual we become the less human we would be. Isn’t being human a sign of spiritual failure? Isn’t that why we use being human as an excuse for failures in our best self and our highest way of being?”
– David Benner, Soulful Spirituality
Embodied Spirituality in Practice
A DISCIPLINE OR PRACTICE TO INCORPORATE INTO YOUR LIFE.
INSPIRATION AND PRACTICAL APPLICATION FROM A CREATIVE
DISCOVER YOUR OWN HUMANITY – YOUR LIMITS, GIFTS AND BROKENNESS
Assignment: Do the Embodied Spiritual Practice above – “Limited, Broken and Gifted” and write or create something as a response and then upload it here
This is a chance to express yourself creatively. Perhaps something in this part of the timeline has challenged, excited or inspired you. You may want to think about how you could express that through drawing, writing, painting, filming, designing or photographing something to share with others here at creativeimagebearers.com.
Optional: In addition to the assignment above, please write a haiku, poem, song or create a piece to express yourself and share it with us!
Final Take-Away to give context…
PROVOKE THOUGHTS, QUESTIONS…
ngaging our Humanity is a courageous undertaking. We need to be growing more and more comfortable in our own skin. Aware of the tensions involved in who God made us to be.
e are limited, gifted and broken. These three elements of our humanity are present and draw us back to God as our source. We are made to image Him in our body, soul and spirit. Every part of us is to image Triune God. We are human, will always be human in the beginning, middle and end of the story. Human forever. Jesus shows us a new way to be human. Fully human joining our human frailty to the power of Trinity in fellowship.
ow can you embrace your humanity today? What vulnerability are you experiencing right now? How do you remain human and allow God to be God within who He has created you to be as His imagebearer?
WE WOULD LOVE TO HEAR FROM YOU
Sourceview Bible App:
YouVersion Bible by Life.Church
Amazing Bible Timeline by Bible Charts and Maps:
Bible Project: “How to Read the Bible” Series (6 videos)
Find Yourself in the Story: