Last night The Point focused on the spiritual practices of stillness and meditation. Pastor Paul gave us some awesome instruction in Christian meditation, and the students had a great opportunity to practice. It was such a significant time, I felt it would be good to share some thoughts with everyone!
Christian meditation differs from many other forms in significant ways. The end goals of Eastern and New Age is emptiness and detachment from the burdens and pains of life and individuality. Christian meditation, in contrast, seeks a greater attachment. Not attachment to the needs and desires of this world, but attachment to the fullness of God, the Source of all Life. Christian meditation is not the act of emptying oneself but filling oneself with the presence of the Holy Spirit and the Word.
Meditation may seem complicated or hard. We often try to ascribe rules or rites to the practice, but Christian meditation is not a ritual to be performed. Simply put, meditation is the act of thinking on our God. We employ the Word, the Holy Spirit in us, and our imagination to do as the Apostle Paul instructed:
“Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.” - Philippians 4:8Meditation and stillness allow us to tune our hearts, minds, ears, and eyes to the things of God. After all, if God is alive and active today, shouldn’t we spend some time listening to what he is saying? The only way to really learn meditation is to practice meditation. Here are some verses to get you started:
- This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you[c] shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. – Joshua 1:8-9
- When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches. – Psalm 63:6
- I will also meditate on all Your work, And talk of Your deeds. – Psalm 77:12
- I will meditate on the glorious splendor of Your majesty, And on Your wondrous works. – Psalm 145:5
- Till I come, give attention to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine. Do not neglect the gift that is in you, which was given to you by prophecy with the laying on of the hands of the eldership. Meditate on these things; give yourself entirely to them, that your progress may be evident to all. – 1 Timothy 4:13-15