Midtown Church Austin TX

Meditation

We live in a world of hurry, but even in this hurried world, God calls us to abide in Him, to trust Him fully, and to follow Him.

Meditation is a practice that allows us to cultivate an inner sanctuary rooted in Christ. Meditation means to listen to God's word, reflect on His works, rehearse His deeds and ponder His ways. It is paying attention and reflecting upon the Creator and His creation and in the process, learning and understanding who He is.

Commonly, meditation is understood as the practice of emptying the mind and detaching yourself from the world in order to be free from the burdens of life. Christian meditation, however, is an attempt to fill the mind and a practice which leads us to the inner wholeness necessary to give ourselves to God freely. In his classic book, Celebration of Disciplines, Richard Foster writes, "Christian meditation, very simply, is the ability to hear God's voice and obey his word."

Meditation is a discipline that requires consistency and practice, but the act of meditation itself is not complicated. It is a discipline best learned through practice and personal experience. While there are multiple forms of meditation (see the recommended resources in the back), there is great value in meditating upon Scripture. This differs from studying Scripture as it focuses on internalizing and personalizing the passage. There is a place for study but this specific practice is a time to sit with a word or passage and truly ponder it. In his book Prayer as a Place, Charles Bello describes Biblical mediation is a way of reading, meditating, and praying the Scriptures in a manner that enables the Word of God to penetrate deeply into our hearts.

Tips for Practicing Meditation:

Find a Place.

Designate a location that is quiet and free from interruption.
Put away any distractions (i.e. phone, laptop, tv, etc.).

Set a Time.

As you grow in this discipline, meditation will become more a way of life, but until then, setting specific times for contemplative prayer will help you grow. Consider a time that have little to no distractions such as early morning before the household awakes or perhaps late at night.

Consider Your Posture.

While you can meditate in any position, picking a position that is comfortable, not distracting, and receptive can help you center your body, mind, and spirit before God.    

Keep a Journal.

Keep track of what you meditate on and record what the Lord is revealing to you. Giving time to look back through your journal entries will help you uncover patterns in your spiritual walk and allow you to reflect on what God has been saying to you as you continue to move forward.

Practice Lectio Divina.

Gospel Meditation.

Taking time to meditate on the gospel itself will help you focus on who God is, how He has loved and served you, and who you are as a result. Consider beginning each day by thinking through the Biblical answers to the following questions: