Spiritual meditation is communing with God – not yoga, emptying our mind, or mindless repetition of certain words.
Psalm 119:10-11 With my whole heart have I sought thee: O let me not wander from thy commandments. Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.
Meditating on God means we give ourselves completely to thinking about him. If we’re thinking of all the things going on around us, we aren’t meditating. We can’t be worrying about corona virus with 90,000 people infected and 3,000 dead in the world, or about the flu with 32,000,000 cases and 18,000 deaths in the US (as of 3/2/2020). God doesn’t want us to fear going about our daily business or meditating on fear of corona virus or the flu. He wants us to meditate on his word.
Psalm 119:15-16 I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto thy ways. I will delight myself in thy statutes: I will not forget thy word.
Jesus meditated – fasted and prayed for 40 days and nights in the wilderness. When the devil tempted him, Jesus used the word of God to fight him. He said “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word…” of God. (Matthew 4:4). Jesus said to go into our closet, a place away from the distractions and cell phones, to focus strictly on God.
Matthew 6:5-8 And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men…But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father…and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly. But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.
God spoke directly to Joshua. He speaks to us through his word when we read the Bible and in messages we hear at church. He wants to speak directly to us. God wants us to meditate day and night, even as we go about our day, on what the scriptures mean and how they apply to us. We’ll have fears, distraction, and turmoil if we get all caught up in things of the world. We’ll feel terrible. We have to choose to keep our focus on God.
Joshua 1:1-9 Now after the death of Moses…the Lord spake unto Joshua…Moses’ minister, saying, Moses my servant is dead; now therefore arise, go over this Jordan…unto the land which I do give to them…There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee. Be strong and of a good courage…divide for an inheritance the land, which I sware unto their fathers to give them. Only be thou strong and very courageous…do according to all the law…turn not from it to the right hand or to the left, that thou mayest prosper whithersoever thou goest. This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth…meditate therein day and night…do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and…thou shalt have good success. Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid…God is with thee…
When you’re in a hard place, consider what Jesus went through. This will help you not get weary in your mind.
Hebrews 12:2-3 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy…set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is…at the right hand…of God. For consider him…lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.
We have to meditate right and not lose our focus on God’s promises or we don’t come boldly to ask God for grace to help. Jesus was tempted in all points like us. The devil wants us to think we’re an exception so God can’t help. God promised to hold our hand and not leave us.
Hebrews 4:15-16 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.
God wants us to understand so he can help us. We can ask him why a verse is important to us and what it means.
Psalm 119:27 Make me to understand the way of thy precepts: so shall I talk of thy wondrous works.
We need to meditate about what God has done for us and others in the past.
Psalm 143:5 I remember the days of old; I meditate on all thy works; I muse on the work of thy hands.
Before we ask, God will hear. Meditate on the miracles God has done for us. This will cause us to worship. Meditating day and night won’t leave room for worrying and fretting. We will prosper and our blessings will increase if we meditate on God and his word. We’ll be glad to come to church and worship God. If we haven’t been meditating right, it will be hard to worship or praise God. Our meditation is important to the enthusiasm and worship of our church services.
Psalm 1:2-3 But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water…bringeth forth his fruit in his season…and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
Isaac was about 36 when Sarah his mother died and he was grieving for her 4 years later. Abraham was 140 and told his servant to get a wife for Isaac from his brother’s house. He didn’t want Isaac to marry a Canaanite woman. His servant arrived and sat by a well. He prayed that the woman who offered to water his camels when he asked for a drink of water would be for Isaac. He prayed specifically and God answered specifically. Rebekkah came and brought him to her house.
Genesis 24:34-44 And he said, I am Abraham’s servant. And the Lord hath blessed my master greatly; and he is become great: and he hath given him flocks, and herds, and silver, and gold..Sarah my master’s wife bare a son…when she was old …And my master made me swear, saying, Thou shalt not take a wife to my son of the daughters of the Canaanites…thou shalt go unto my father’s house…and take a wife unto my son…And he said unto me, The Lord…will send his angel with thee, and prosper thy way…I came this day unto the well, and said, O Lord God of my master Abraham, if now thou do prosper my way…that when the virgin cometh forth to draw water, and I say…Give me, I pray thee, a little water of thy pitcher to drink; And she say…I will also draw for thy camels: let the same be the woman whom the Lord hath appointed…
The servant bowed and worshiped God because God prospered his way as Isaac had told him. Rebekkah’s mother and brother wanted her to stay a while, but he told them not hinder his return to Isaac. They let Rebekkah choose and she said she’d go. They blessed her and said she should be the mother of millions, like God’s blessing for Abraham’s seed.
Genesis 24:45-61 And before I had done speaking in mine heart, behold, Rebekah came forth..I said unto her, Let me drink, I pray thee. And she…said, Drink, and I will give thy camels drink also…I asked her, and said, Whose daughter art thou? And she said, The daughter of Bethuel, Nahor’s son…And I bowed down my head, and worshipped the Lord…which had led me in the right way to take my master’s brother’s daughter unto his son…Laban and Bethuel answered…Rebekah is before thee, take her…as the Lord hath spoken. And it came to pass, that, when Abraham’s servant heard their words, he worshipped the Lord…And they did eat and drink…and they rose up in the morning…And her brother and her mother said, Let the damsel abide with us a few days…And he said unto them, Hinder me not, seeing the Lord hath prospered my way; send me away that I may go to my master. And they said, We will call the damsel…and said unto her, Wilt thou go with this man? And she said, I will go…they blessed Rebekah, and said…be thou the mother of thousands of millions… Rebekah arose, and her damsels, and they rode upon the camels…and the servant took Rebekah, and went his way.
When the servant arrived with Rebekkah, Isaac was meditating in the field. He had a personal relationship with God. Rebekkah was a comfort to Isaac when he took her to Sarah’s tent to be his wife. He was grieving for his mom for 4 years. People grieve their own way. We need to be patient, not say to them “Get over it” because they grieve in their own time.
Genesis 24:63-67 And Isaac went out to meditate in the field at the eventide: and…behold, the camels were coming. And Rebekah…when she saw Isaac, she lighted off the camel. For…the servant had said, It is my master: therefore she took a vail, and covered herself. And the servant told Isaac all…And Isaac brought her into his mother Sarah’s tent, and took Rebekah, and she became his wife; and he loved her: and Isaac was comforted after his mother’s death.
We have to get our affections set on God to meditate. Science shows that meditating on good things reduces anxiety and stress, lengthens our attention span, reduces memory loss, generates kindness and compassion, and improves sleep.
Colossians 3:1-2 If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.
(Notes from the Mature Class Bible Study, teacher Edith Tolbert)