The purpose of meditation is not to get away from life but to be alone with God.
The practice of meditation is foreign to many but to those who even dip their toes into the water of this discipline have found it to be as important as breathing. At its core, meditation is pulling away from life to be with God. Jesus himself did this. It short, it helps strengthen your connection to the heart of God’s desire for your life.
The easiest way to start is just to do it. As you practice it more and more your will discover your own particular way that best works for you. While there are many models to follow, do not fall into the trap of trying to do it just like someone else. Be honest with yourself and listen to yourself. I am guilty of trying to follow someone else’s ways and have failed miserably. The moment that I found my way through practice (trial and error), I became in love with meditation.
The goal of meditation is not about controlling the outcome or using your analytical mind to figure out something. It is more about listening or observing. It is about being quiet and letting God minister to you.
Here is a short list of things that have worked for me. But again, you must find out what works for you.
- Finding a time and place to pull away. At first, I was more rigid about my time and place. With time and practice, I am more free flowing in my practice. But most important is being intentional. Because it is so important to me, intentionality is like eating. I know when I am hungry or even starving at times. But a regular practice is usually healthier.
- Some places that I have used are sitting in my backyard, a quiet room in my house, driving down the road with the radio off, when I exercise, after reading a piece of scripture, in my office, on a walk, at my child’s practice field, in the sanctuary, lying awake at night, etc.
- Don’t punish yourself when you miss a day, even a few days or a week. Come back to it to enjoy. The joy of doing it will draw you deeper into it.
- Don’t expect your time listening to God to always reveal some great truth. More often than not, it will not be that way. Rather consider it more like sitting with a friend. The visit was plenty.
- The things that I discover in my meditation are usually for me, but there are occasions that I share them with others. But when I do share them, it is only to share. They are not to defend or prescribe.