Quiet thought. Focused reflection.
Are your nerves screaming already?
Be quiet? Sit still? Are you kidding?
Nope. Meditation stars as one of the spiritual disciplines for a reason, but I’m not talking about Eastern meditation where you empty your mind. Christian meditation requires focused concentration.
A filling, not an emptying.
So, how do we get there in our ever-present electronic, schedule-crammed twenty-first century life?
Try meditating on a story.
Take the story of Samson. Sex, violence, betrayal. Nothing boring here.
Read Judges 16, but let’s picture ourselves as Samson’s best buds. Let’s place ourselves in the story and ask God for our takeaway.
Though Samson’s story begins in Judges 13, we discover much about Samson in the first three verses of chapter sixteen.
- He’s in enemy territory.
- He’s chasing pagan women.
- He’s cocky.
The action picks up in verse 4 as Delilah comes onto the scene. With her come intrigue and betrayal.
As Samson’s best friends, we’re going nuts. It’s obvious to everyone what’s going on—except Samson. Which begs the question, what are our blind spots? Are we ignoring warnings from those close to us? What do others see that we’re missing?
Samson crashes and burns in verses 15-22. He’s lost his anointing, and his love has betrayed him. How did he get here? How could we get here?
Verses 21-22 are key, because Samson’s physical condition now reflects the condition of his heart: blind, shackled, grinding grain like an animal.
But God hasn’t finished with Samson.
In verses 23-30, the scene shifts. God’s champion has been reduced to cheap entertainment at God’s expense. The air in Dagon’s temple must have been heavy with demonic oppression. Makes you wonder if Samson had the discernment to sense it.
Though Samson takes out the entire crowd, his thoughts are only for himself. He wants revenge for the loss of his eyes. Yet, truly, his loss of sight came from a lifestyle of independence from God and poor choices.
How’s that for meditation? Meditation doesn’t have to be a time of sitting still watching the clock tick. Nor is it a time of Bible study. Meditation is focused reflection before God. A soaking in the Word, in prayer, or in worship.
Here are your training tips:
Select one: a Bible story, prayer, or song.
Set the timer.
Soak in it. Keep a notebook handy. Ask God to speak.
Sweat it out. Apply what you learned.
Nail your spiritual workouts this week and change your corner of the gym.
Workout for the Week: Meditation
Memory Verse: Pull a verse from the story for your meditation passage.
Meditation Passage: Choose any Bible story.
Just Do It: Meditate on a story.
Meditation: A filling, not an emptying. Click To Tweet
Christian meditation requires focused concentration. Click To Tweet
Try meditating on a story. Click To Tweet
Place yourself in the story and ask God for the takeaway. Click To Tweet
Samson’s physical condition reflected the condition of his heart. Click To Tweet