Honoring Your Imagination and Creativity

Making The Saint John’s Bible a Part of Your Home
National Bible Week 2015

“National Bible Week provides a unique opportunity for parents to revisit and renew their understanding of the power of the Word of God in the life of their family. As leaders of the ‘domestic Church,’ parents are encouraged to be not only the first but the best of teachers for their children in the ways of faith.” -USCCB

Day Five

Depending on a person’s preferred learning style—auditory, visual, or kinesthetic—individuals might find affinities for different types of prayer. Consider what types of activities the members of your family prefer and make those a part of your prayer. Whether that be playing or making music inspired by the Word of God, listening to audio recordings of Scripture, singing, drawing your own interpretations of the Biblical scenes, writing and decorating the word you receive in lectio divina, or creating mini plays or skits, honor what you and your family members are naturally drawn to do.

The Saint John’s Bible is undoubtedly brimming with creativity. After spending some time doing visio divina, you might be surprised by the ways in which you are learning God speaks to you—through colors, textures, lines, patterns, and so on. As you begin to trust what God is revealing through the work of the artists and calligraphers of The Saint John’s Bible, hopefully you will learn to trust the images that unfold internally within you, too.

St. Ignatius of Loyola was a huge proponent of praying with one’s imagination, which is practiced by placing oneself in the scenes of Scripture. The idea is that once you read a Biblical text, you then begin to visualize what you heard, imagining where you are and who you are with. Next directing your attention to the details, you ask yourself what you see, hear, taste, touch, smell, and feel. This is a type of prayer that anyone can do at any age. Within our imaginations we can see, hear, and touch things in the scenes as if we were there. In this way, the living Word of God becomes personal.

Tips:

  • Designate someone to read the passage of your choosing.
  • Then allow some quiet reflection time so that everyone can enter into their own imaginations and encounter God uniquely.
  • You may find it helpful to prepare a list of basic questions for each person to have in front of them such as: What is around me? Who else is there? What do their faces look like? Are they happy? Sad? Angry? What emotions do I feel? What do I hear? Is anyone speaking to me? What are the smells?
  • This could also be a great time to bring out any art or craft supplies, so that those who wish to draw or otherwise create what is in their imagination may do so.
  • Invite each person to share about what he or she experienced.
  • Conclude by reading the passage a final time.

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