Listening to God's Word

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Chapter One

Read, Explore, Discuss

Genesis 1: Divine goodness in creation
Exodus 37: Moses sees God's beauty
Isaiah 55: An invitation to God's presence
Psalms 19 and 119: God in creation and in law
Proverbs 9: Wisdom issues her call
John 1: The Word becomes flesh
Philippians 2:1-8: Adopting the mind of Christ
Galatians 5:22-23: Good fruits of the Spirit in us

 

In the Spirit of Responsive Listening

  • Enter the conversation with God through prayer, contemplation, and Scripture reading.
  • Praise the God of creation by taking refreshment in natural surroundings. Exercise stewardship of the environment personally and politically.
  • Encounter the God of incarnation in relationships of love, generosity, and respect.  Seek illumination, healing, and liberation for yourself, and for others both near and far.
  • Invite the God of the indwelling Spirit to guide you in all your ways.

Chapter Two

Read, Explore, Discuss

Genesis 2 and 3:  Creation is subject to sin
Job 38-42: God speaks to Job
Ecclesiastes 1-6: The vanity of the world
Proverbs 8:22-36: Wisdom at the foundations of the world
Psalm 104: In praise for the goodness of creation
John 15-17: Choosing the world or Jesus
1 Corinthians 13: Attributes of the Divine
1 John 4: In the world but not of it

In the Spirit of Responsive Listening

  • Reflect on the broken elements of your family history. How do you heal, or reinforce, this legacy?
  • Consider the list of capital (deadly) sins: pride, envy, greed, anger, sloth, lust, and gluttony. Name the one that creates the most distance between you and God.
  • The world suffers from acts of injustice, violence, and disunity. What do you do for justice, peace, and the spirit of community?
  • Lost concrete steps you can take to avoid cynicism and despair about the present condition of the world.

Chapter Three

Read, Explore, Discuss

Genesis 12:1-9 and 15:1-5: Covenant with Abraham
Genesis 32:23-33: Jacob and the angel
Exodus 19 and 20: Covenant with Moses
1 Samuel 7: Covenant with David
1 Kings 6:11-13; 8:1-21; 9:1-9: Solomon and the Temple
Ezekiel 10:1-23: God's Glory departs the Temple
Jeremiah 52:1-30: The destruction of Jerusalem

In the Spirit of Responsive Listening

  • Reflect on promises spoken into your life: those made to you and those you have made. Resolve to be a better promise keeper.
  • Evaluate how you tell your life story: Is it predominantly good news or bad? Who gets blamed and who exonerated? Is it a story of cynicism or hope?
  • Over whom do you exercise authority? Pray for the grace to use power wisely.
  • How portable is your God? Consider where and how you encounter the divine presence. Expand the territory.

Chapter Four

Read, Explore, Discuss

Exodus 12: Passover in Egypt
Deuteronomy 30: The blessing and the curse
Zechariah 3:9-20: The faithful remnant
Isaiah 42:1-9; 49:1-7; 50:4-11; 52:13-53:1: Servant songs
Malachi 3: The Day of the Lord
Ezekiel 37:1-14: Vision of the dry bones
Daniel 12: Secret revelation of the end of days
Matthew 25: 31-46: Justice and fidelity linked
1 Corinthians 1:18-2:16: Christ is the Wisdom of God

 

In the Spirit of Responsive Listening

  • Consider the resources you've used to navigate the crises you have faced so far.
  • Listen attentively for the modern prophets who speak a challenging word daily into the world.
  • Resolve to read the books of Wisdom teachers, both ancient and contemporary. Visit your local Catholic bookstore for ideas.
  • Pray for a fuller reception of the spiritual gifts: wisdom, understanding, knowledge, counsel, courage, reverence, and wonder and awe in the presence of the Lord.

Chapter Five

Read, Explore, Discuss

Ecclesiastes 2:1-8: For everything, a season
Wisdom 3:1-9: The just will not perish
2 Maccabees 7: Hope in the God of immorality
Mark 9:33-37; 10:13-16: Children and the Kingdom
Matthew 13, 18, 20-22, 25: Kingdom parables
Luke 12:54-56; 17:20-21; 21:5-36: Signs of the times
John 2:4; 4:21-26; 5:25-29; 7:6, 30; 12:20-36; 16:1-33: knowing the hour
Revelation 7:15-17; 10:5-7; 11:17-18; 12:10-12; 19:5-16: The victory is decided
Revelation 1:8, 17; 3:20, 21:1-8; 22:1-21: God's time and ours

 

In the Spirit of Responsive Listening

  • Consider every day and urgent opportunity to marry the will of God in every decision.
  • Become like a child, open to each new person, event, and possibility.
  • Live for today.  Act for eternity.