Live, Laugh, Love, Lectio

The tree lined road to the monastery Welcome C...

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This week I led a retreat at the Monastery of the Holy Spirit on the theme of “Live, Laugh, Love.” It’s an interesting topic to explore in the setting of a Trappist monastery, known for its silent atmosphere and ethos of Cistercian simplicity. But the small group of retreatants and I have enjoyed plenty of fun and chuckles as we have explored our topic together.

One of the exercises I provided for the retreatants was a lectio divina exercise on the following scripture verses. I thought they were worth passing along. The next time you need a gentle reminder that contemplative spirituality is all about laughter and joy, reflect on these verses:

We are fools on Christ’s account, but you are wise in Christ; we are weak, but you are strong; you are held in honor, but we in disrepute. (I Corinthians 4:10)

Our mouths were filled with laughter; our tongues sang for joy. Then it was said among the nations, “The LORD had done great things for them.” (Psalm 126:2)

Blessed are you who are now weeping, for you will laugh. (Luke 6:21)

Rejoice in the Lord always. I shall say it again: rejoice! (Philippians 4:4)

Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart. (Psalm 37:4)

Jesus said, “I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and your joy may be complete.” (John 15:11)

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (Romans 15:13)

I believe I shall enjoy the LORD’s goodness in the land of the living. (Psalm 27:13)

Translations are from either the New Revised Standard Version or the New American Bible.

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  1. Hooray — great verses. Nice to have one’s attention drawn to some jollity in the Bible — too often people only pick out the sombre bits.

    It’s also important for any spiritual tradition to be able to laugh at itself.

    I have been doing a bit of lectio divina</a. as well, inspired by your Big Book of Christian Mysticism.

  2. chaidrinkingfool says:

    A Catholic priest, an Episcopal priest, and a Catholic nun walk into a retreat house…

    I can’t believe that didn’t occur to me during the retreat: I’m sure that would have elicited numerous groans.

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