The Bible is a story – of- life- in -the –Spirit and is about the people of Israel who were guided by God’s prophetic word through to the story of Jesus. In the Book of Acts we also read the story of the early Church and through faith the Spirit helps us to interpret these stories.
Jesus’s spirit is the power of his love and guides my prayer teaching me in hidden and in gentle ways how to pray.
The Spirit also enlightens me about the effects of sin in my life. He empowers me to embrace them without pretence and to ask for His forgiveness. Like fire the Spirit has a cleansing and sanctifying action in our lives.
Everything in the scriptures relates to Jesus.
To proclaim and appropriate scripture is faith in action. We believe in the promises of Christ and profess them to be alive and operative in our lives.
To appropriate means to apply the same graces Jesus received from his Father for my life too. When I wish to be set free from a hurt that keeps creating an anxiety or causes inner turmoil I simply ask ,” where in Jesus’ life was he tempted or harassed by others or the forces of darkness ( evil spirits ) in a similar way
Where in scripture did He overcome a desire to not forgive, or to remain in a helplessness or powerless situation? I prayerfully proclaim those same graces for myself.
We appropriate scripture from the many parables, miracles and acts of love in Jesus’ life such as putting me in the place of the person who is healed or forgiven or chosen by Jesus.
e.g. In the Scripture Parable of the Fig Tree I am the barren fig tree that the Lord gives still more time to bear fruit;
A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, and he came looking for fruit on it but found none. He said to his vinedresser, “For three years now I have been coming to look for fruit on this fig tree and finding none. Cut it down: why should it be taking up ground?” Sir, the man replied,” leave it one more year and give me time to dig around it and manure it: it may bear fruit next year; if not, then you can cut it down.” (Luke 13: 6-9).
In faith and trust in God’s love I ask Jesus for this same grace in the parable for myself. For him to nurture me and heal my soul from the effects of sin so I can bear fruit through the power of his love towards myself and for others. Show me Jesus what is the manure you wish to nurture me with.
Asking Jesus to show you prepares the way for the Holy Spirit to prompt you how to pray or proclaim his word. In many instances He guides you towards the words you are to proclaim in the scripture. In some healing situations the spirit will prompt you to pray devotional prayers for the healing to be on going.
Catholic prayer devotions bring many blessings and they help us to re-learn healthy ways of thinking and acting when we begin to slip back into our old ways or habits.