Saint Ignatius of Loyola was born Inigo Lopez de Loyola to a family of minor nobility in Spain the late 1400s. He had a conversion experience while recovering from a serious battle injury. After much study of Christ and many saints, Ignatius, who became a priest, founded the Society of Jesus, or the Jesuits.
Ignatius wrote a book about the spiritual practices that he used that has a become a classic. One form of scripture reading that has become a part of Benedictine tradition is lectio divina. Lectio divina uses one’s imagination to help them become aware of aspects of scripture or the gospel that they might not otherwise have noticed. It is also a way that the Holy Spirit can draw our attention to concepts or information. Here is generally how it is done:
Find a passage of scripture, particularly one where Jesus is interacting with people.
Read through it once or twice to get familiar with the story.
Go back through the story slowly, re-creating it in your mind as though you were there. What do you see? Hear? Smell? Feel?
Ask yourself what stands out to you? What are you most aware of as you finish recounting the scripture in your mind.
Pray through what comes to mind. Why do you think you noticed that? How does it apply to your life or experience?
Try reading scripture this way a couple of different times this week. Allow your spirit to be open to the prompting of the Holy Spirit.