Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers. Psalm 1:1-3
One of the most important disciplines we can learn which impacts our daily life is learning how to meditate on God and scripture. Psalm 1 talks about delighting in the law of the Lord. Jesus came to fulfill the law and perfect it. Learning to meditate on Jesus, his teachings and the law he came to fulfill focuses our minds on the truth God has revealed to us in the scriptures and brings clarity to our daily lives as we go about our day. The opportunity to come before the creator of the universe and dwell on his nature and awesome power is transformative in how we view God and ourselves.
Imagine buying a brand new plant for your house and sticking it in a closet and never letting it see sunlight. When we deny ourselves the opportunity to come before God each day and spend time with him in meditation and prayer, it's like sticking our souls in the closet and denying them the opportunity to see their life giving creator. Like the sun is to a plant or tree, the presence of God is to our souls. I love the quote from John Eldridge's book Beautiful Outlaw where he states "we need Jesus like we need oxygen". Our souls constantly long for a close relationship with our creator.
We recommend listening to the below podcast from Timothy Keller and then beginning to set aside time each day, preferably in the morning if your schedule allows, to be still and reflect on the nature of God and his greatness. It's important as Keller mentions to learn to primarily mediate on scripture. It's fine to meditate on other things but in order for us to truly meditate on God, we need to focus on the truths he has revealed in scripture. We want you to begin to try to listen to what God may be trying to tell you through his word. We recommend memorizing the above passage from Psalm 1 to start and, if possible, find a serene and peaceful place outdoors. This can aid in bringing you closer to God as you step out into his creation.
Learning to meditate is difficult as our minds will wander off to the lists of things we need to get done, work, family or an issue we might be dealing with. This is okay and perfectly normal. Don't get too frustrated but instead, embrace this part of the process and know this is the norm and not the exception. We recommend trying this discipline for 30 days straight in order to begin to make it a habit. Once meditating on God and scripture becomes a habit, you will begin to look forward to this time in the morning as you become more focused on God and his desires for your life. Something happens to us when we begin to make time in our lives being still before God. Our souls begin to open up and become recharged.
If you ask people who make this discipline a daily habit, most will enthusiastically tell you their days are different and less productive when they miss their quite time with God. This is one of the reasons we recommend making time for this early in the morning since it sets the stage for the rest of our day. If you have to miss your early morning meditation, even taking a few minutes at some point throughout your day to pause and reflect on the goodness of God can have an immediate impact on you. The daily noise and stress most people find themselves surrounded by has a very negative impact on us. We need to recognize and understand this and make this time an important part of our daily routines. The below free podcast from Keller has additional sermons which go along with it and are available at www.gospelinlife.com for a small fee. We recommend listening to the below podcast more than once and taking notes as there is a wealth of knowledge here from Keller. We also recommend getting a journal to begin taking notes on your experience and any insights which may come to you as you meditate on scripture. This should help lead you into a more productive prayer time.
Link to a nice refillable journal for taking notes from your meditation and prayer time.