Years ago, I heard a godly man say that one of the best ways to receive remarkably clear guidance from the Lord was to meditate on the Word of God. He said that as we do this, the Holy Spirit enlightens and opens up the Scriptures to us, revealing divine truths that we can apply to our lives in every situation. Some definitions of the word "meditation" are: "To chew over, think over, ponder, or reflect or contemplate; to think intently and at length as for spiritual purposes." For the Christian, meditation is not some mystical hocus-pocus, but a very practical and useful spiritual discipline.
The Bible has a lot to say about meditation. When Joshua was taking Moses' place after his death, the Lord told him: "Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful." (Joshua 1:8 NIV) Notice that God indicated that meditating on His Word would lead to obedience. And obedience would lead to prosperity and success. Psalm 119:11 (NASB) also reveals the connection between meditating on the Scriptures and obedience. It says: "Your word have I laid up in my heart, that I might not sin against You." (Psalm 119:11 AMP) When we are struggling with a repetitive sin, we can make deposits of God's Word in our hearts by memorizing and meditating on applicable Scriptures, and receiving the supernatural strength and wisdom we need to overcome.
The very first psalm in the Bible talks about the value of meditating on the Word of God. It says: "Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. 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, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers." (Psalm 1:1-3 NIV) This passage reveals that meditation upon God's Word can renew our minds and sharpen our focus so that we will closely monitor our companionships, attitudes, and actions. This kind of godly living will enable us to be fruitful, prosperous, and productive, even in times of trial. The author of Psalm 119, the longest psalm in the Bible, wrote: "My eyes stay open through the watches of the night, that I may meditate on Your promises." (Psalm 119:148 NIV) If someone were to ask me how I've managed to remain positive and hopeful through the toughest times in my life, I'd have to say that it was by meditating on the promises of God. When we give our lives to Christ, we inherit a wealth of supernatural promises that we can pray and claim in faith for our victory in every situation.
If you have a sincere desire to lead others to the Lord, then heed the advice of the apostle Paul in 1 Timothy 4:15-16 (NKJV): "Meditate on these things; give yourself entirely to them, that your progress may be evident to all...for in doing this you will save both yourself and those who hear you." Here we learn that meditating on the Scriptures and on Bible principles accelerates our spiritual growth and progress, and enables us to be powerful, life-changing witnesses for Christ to the world.
The fact is that whether we realize it or not, we are always meditating on something. We might be meditating on our problems, on how someone has hurt us, or on how we can get our way in a situation. David prayed: "May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in Your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer." (Psalm 19:14 NIV) It's important that what we meditate on is pleasing to God. He has to listen to our thoughts, as well as to our words. One reason why the Lord is concerned about what we meditate on is that He knows our thoughts are like seeds, and they can determine whether we reap a good harvest or a bitter one. Meditating on God's Word "day and night," as the Scripture says, will lead to prosperity, success, fruitfulness, and blessing. May it be true of every one of us that, "These are the words in my mouth; these are what I chew on and pray"! (Psalm 19:14 MSG)
Prayer: Lord, I pray that from this moment on, my meditations would be promise-centered, instead of problem-centered. Teach me how to dig into Your Word on a daily basis--studying it, believing it, memorizing it, and speaking it. Thank You that as I continually meditate on the Word of God and the things of God, I will lay hold of the abundant life that is mine in Christ!
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