Before I answer that question lets first define what it means to mediate. Dictionary.com synonyms for mediate or meditation include to ponder, to reflect, to ruminate, to contemplate, and to mull over.
If we’re honest, these are things that most people do everyday. The problems is however, that most people meditate, ponder reflect upon and mull over things that are not conducive to peace, joy, harmony, and God’s spirit.
Unfortunately, Christians are just as guilty as others for allowing negativity, worry, anger, fear, and doubt to rob them of their peace of mind and steal their joy.
God said, “I will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on me.”
In Joshua 1:8, we are told to meditate on God’s word day and night if we want to have success in life.
Therefore, shouldn’t every Christian be a meditating Christian? But I think that the question isn’t should Christians meditate because the answer is an obvious yes. Even the Bible admonishes us to mediate. I think that the question that remains in the mind of many Christians is “how” are we to meditate? And the answer to that question lies in what you want to achieve from your meditation experience.
2 Corinthians 10:5 tells us to, “Cast down every thought and imagination that exalts itself against the knowledge of God and bring into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” Well as you know that is easier said than done. Many of us are holding unto ungodly mindsets that keep us from experience God’s best in our lives.
If you are plagued with worry, fear, and negative thinking, you must learn how to gain control over your mind and thoughts and meditation is one of the best ways to do this. By meditating on a sacred word or a passage of scriptures, you can learn to quiet your thoughts and take authority over and root out destructive thinking. This type of meditation, often referred to as scripture, passage, or mantra meditation can help us learn to train our mind.
Psalms 37:7 tells us to “Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him.” Many Christians have a hard time being still. Busyness has become a cornerstone in American life. They don’t know how to relax or even to dwell in God’s presence without being distracted or their mind wandering all over the place. Again, meditating on the Lord for 30 minutes a day in silence and solitude can help Christians learn how to be still before the Lord. Being still and dwelling in God’s presence allow believers to be enveloped with God’s love and spirit, something many Christians have never experienced before. We can’t dwell in God’s presence and not be changed. Every person who had an encounter with Jesus didn’t leave the same.
The Psalmist said, I have hid God’s word in my heart that I might not sin against him. (Psalms 119:11)Through meditation on God’s word, we go beyond a cursory reading of the scriptures. Instead of grazing lightly over God’s word, through meditation, God’s word is able to deeply penetrate our hearts where it can actually take root and grow a harvest. There is a big difference between reading God’s and mulling over, pondering, reflecting upon, and contemplating it. One is superficial, the other is transformative. Meditating on God’s word makes it become real to us. We can meditate on God’s word by slowly and methodically reading the scriptures and then reflecting upon how they relate to our current life or situation. Or we can practice scripture or passage meditation, where we slowly and silently repeat a verse or passage of scripture as we sit in God’s presence for a period of 30 minutes. Both methods will change our lives.
I believe there is no greater and more important practice in the life of a Christian than being still before God. Until we separate ourselves unto the Lord and renew our minds, we will always struggle with the pulls and temptations of modern life. Meditation creates a greater space for God to fill our lives with more of him.
I love what the prophet said Isaiah 50:4, “He [God] awakens me morning by morning, awakens my ear to listen like one being taught.” Our fellowship and intimacy with God will always be in direct proportion to the time we abide in Him and subdue our ego- which begins with conquering and renewing our mind.