We all want to be successful in whatever we do and wherever we are. And, secretly, the rest of us are a little jealous of those who already are. What do they do differently? How does their daily living create opportunities for them that ours does not?
The self-help industry is estimated to be worth near $11 billion in the United States. It’s clear that many of us want what “they” have. But what is it? And how do they get it?
I was reading Time the other day and stumbled across an article entitled '10 Things the Most Successful People Do Every Day'. The very first thing the article notes is having a “Mindful Morning Ritual”.
More than 80 percent of the 200-plus people interviewed have some type of mindfulness practice, typically done in the morning, that helps prepare you to be more self-aware of your thoughts and less emotionally reactive during the day.
Mindfulness is a movement that has been trendy thanks to the rising popularity of yoga; however, you can trace its roots back to Buddha 2,500 years ago.
Although beginning your day with a particular focus for success, erasing any thoughts of fear and hopelessness, and believing you can do whatever you set your hand to do seems like a great way to start your day, the Body of Christ believes focusing on the mind is contradictory to the Spirit.
At Abide, we believe there is a strong way to incorporate Christ into morning meditation practices. Furthermore, the practice of Christian meditation is something that Jesus, his disciples, and even our forefathers of the Body of Christ practiced.
This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success. (Joshua 1:8 KJV)
The Hebrew word for “meditate” in that scripture is the verb ‘hagah’ (pronounced daw-gaw’), which means to speak and muse. Speaking and thinking about the Word of God is what we are commanded to do. However, to allow the breathed-upon mandates from God to penetrate our lives, we must think about that word.
Paul urged his understudy Timothy to do that very thing:
Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all. (1 Timothy 4:15)
In the Greek, the word “meditate” is the verb ‘meletao’ (pronounced mel-et-ah’-o), which means to devise, plan, and ponder. In other words, “meditation” was required for Timothy to truly understand what Paul told him.
Scripture requires time to get into our heart and fill our mind. Yet, where does that time come? After all, you're rushing the kids off to school, fighting traffic to get to work, spending your day trapped in meetings, making dinner, and possibly getting a good night sleep-- only to do it all over again the next day.
A Christian meditation develops inside of us what the Apostle Paul calls a renewed mind.
Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. (Romans 12:2 NLT)
The “customs of this world” in terms of meditation may require all those positions that require too much flexibility, inner breathing, tapping into that inner child, and pressing together your middle finger to your thumb. As believers, we don’t need to “copy that behavior” but only change the way we think.
Consider Christian meditation as a way to create a stronger focus on the biblical verses you need to reach your goals that day. You are renewing your mind by focusing on the Word of God and creating hope in your life where you need it.
Now imagine putting a verse to music. That helps you to meditate on the Word of God. We call it worship. David called it normal.
When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches. (Psalm 63:6 NKJV)
With everything David had to do, his moment before sleep was the only time he had to focus on his relationship with God. That was his moment of meditation – Christian mediation.
He wanted to be successful. His prayers were about many things but the result was for a better walk with God. That made King David a success. Before we knew about Buddha, body contortion, and sitting in a Lotus position, we knew to focus – or meditate – upon God’s Word.
We all need our moment of Christian mediation to be successful. When will yours be? Share with our four million users how to strive for success in your own prayer life.