In highly poetic symbolism, in Job 41, and elsewhere throughout the Bible, Leviathan is presented as different from an ordinary sea monster, because it cannot be captured; at least not by man, as Job exemplifies. God, however, is aloof and unaffected by the terror with which He ascribes to Leviathan. Through the context of the Book of Job, we understand that He alone possesses the power to conquer it (41:10-11).
LOVE the Word® is a Bible study method based on Mary's own practice: lectio without the Latin.
L – Listen (Receive the Word.)
O – Observe (Choose one or more of the following personality approaches to connect the passage to your life and recent events.)
F | Franciscan – Visit a cemetery and pray for the dead, or alternatively, visit a hospital or nursing home and pray with those who will let you.
I | Ignatian – Place yourself in this narrative, using all your sense to imagine the scene.
1:17 And the Lord appointed a great fish to swallow up Jonah; and Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights. 2:1 Then Jonah prayed to the Lord his God from the belly of the fish, 2 saying,
“I called to the Lord, out of my distress, and he answered me; out of the belly of Sheol I cried, and thou didst hear my voice. 3 For thou didst cast me into the deep, into the heart of the seas, and the flood was round about me; all thy waves and thy billows passed over me. 4 Then I said, ‘I am cast out from thy presence; how shall I again look upon thy holy temple?’ 5 The waters closed in over me, the deep was round about me; weeds were wrapped about my head
6 at the roots of the mountains. I went down to the land whose bars closed upon me for ever; yet thou didst bring up my life from the Pit, O Lord my God. 7 When my soul fainted within me, I remembered the Lord; and my prayer came to thee, into thy holy temple. 8 Those who pay regard to vain idols forsake their true loyalty. 9 But I with the voice of thanksgiving will sacrifice to thee; what I have vowed I will pay. Deliverance belongs to the Lord!”
10 And the Lord spoke to the fish, and it vomited out Jonah
A | Augustinian – Think about small ways you can increase penances or sacrifices on behalf of the Church at this difficult time? How can you be more pure, so that you contribute to her renewal from within, rather than attempting to change Her from without?
When have you behaved tempestuously or acted stormily? Is there a pattern to this behavior in your life?
T | Thomistic – What conclusions can you draw about Evil as the god and ruler of this world, the one who influences earthly governments, institutions, and current intellectual philosophies? What responsibility do you have in light of this knowledge? What might God want you to do about that?
V – Verbalize (Pray about your thoughts and emotions.)
Remembering that He loves you and that you are in His presence, talk to God about the particulars of your O – Observe step. You may want to write your reflections in your LOVE the Word® journal. Or, get a free journal page and guide in the right-hand margin.
E – Entrust (May it be done to me according to your word!)
I know that you can do all things and no purpose of yours can be thwarted (Job 42:1). Amen +
*LOVE the Word® exercises are offered according to FIAT: the four personalities, or “prayer forms,” explored in Prayer and Temperament, by Chester Michael and Marie Norrisey: Franciscan, Ignatian, Augustinian, and Thomistic: FIAT! These prayer forms correspond to the Myers-Briggs personality types.
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