We will continue to spend several weeks using Visio Divina as our devotional practice.
As you engage in Visio Divina, we will engage our eyes as we reflect on this week's scripture. As you get ready to begin, find a comfortable and quiet place. You may like to journal in response, but that is not necessary. When my mind wanders, I find it helpful to jot down what I was thinking (since it's often things I need to do or items for a grocery list!) and then to return to my devotional time.
Take several deep breaths before you begin.
Our scripture for this week is Acts 17:1-9 and 1 Thessalonians 1:1-10.
"After Paul and Silashad passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews.And Paul went in, as was his custom, and on three sabbath days argued with them from the scriptures,explaining and proving that it was necessary for the Messiah to suffer and to rise from the dead, and saying, ‘This is the Messiah,Jesus whom I am proclaiming to you.’Some of them were persuaded and joined Paul and Silas, as did a great many of the devout Greeks and not a few of the leading women.But the Jews became jealous, and with the help of some ruffians in the market-places they formed a mob and set the city in an uproar. While they were searching for Paul and Silas to bring them out to the assembly, they attacked Jason’s house.When they could not find them, they dragged Jason and some believers before the city authorities,shouting, ‘These people who have been turning the world upside down have come here also,and Jason has entertained them as guests. They are all acting contrary to the decrees of the emperor, saying that there is another king named Jesus.’The people and the city officials were disturbed when they heard this,and after they had taken bail from Jason and the others, they let them go."
"Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy,
To the church of the Thessalonians in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:
Grace to you and peace. We always give thanks to God for all of you and mention you in our prayers, constantly remembering before our God and Father your work of faith and labor of love and steadfastness of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ. For we know, brothers and sisters beloved by God, that he has chosen you, because our message of the gospel came to you not in word only, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction; just as you know what kind of people we proved to be among you for your sake. And you became imitators of us and of the Lord, for in spite of persecution you received the word with joy inspired by the Holy Spirit, so that you became an example to all the believers in Macedonia and in Achaia. For the word of the Lord has sounded forth from you not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but in every place where your faith in God has become known, so that we have no need to speak about it. For the people of those regions report about us what kind of welcome we had among you, and how you turned to God from idols, to serve a living and true God, and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead—Jesus, who rescues us from the wrath that is coming."
If you would like to share any of your observations or wonderings, feel free to do so in our Facebook group, with a friend or with Pastor Lecia.