Our minds are more undisciplined than they have ever been. We have believed the myth that multi-tasking is helpful and allows us to be more productive. We can’t sit still for more than 60 seconds. Cognition-based suffering is on the rise. Suicidal ideations are spiking. Thoughts are racing. Tasks are never-ending and ever-increasing. If we had 28 hours in a day, we’d fill those extra 4 hours up with more busy-ness in no time flat. Worst of all, we can’t hear from God. We haven’t lost our ability to ask for our long list of needs in prayer, but we’ve handicapped our ability to listen for God’s will.
We are unkind. We are anxious. We are depressed. We are irritable. We are rushed. We are addicted to adrenaline. We are plagued by the past and fixated on the future–rarely living in the NOW. We are bombarded with timelines, feeds, propaganda, information, #WCW, #MCM, #POTD, #TBT, tweets, retweets, bunny ears and flower crowns…oh and don’t forget “stories”. Excitement-filled days equal a good life and the mundane equals a boring life. It is obvious that our minds are chaotic and we need something to calm them down.
Don’t let that word scare you. Don’t let the practice trigger skepticism. It’s very easy to be critical of what we don’t understand. The practice of meditation is often highly criticized in Christian institutions, meanwhile the discipline of our minds is worsening each day. Let’s fix this.
Major Myth about Meditation
- It’s an Eastern religion practice: The truth is, God created the world and everything in it, that means everything started with God. Meditation started with God. The enemy takes whatever God makes and tries to counterfeit it. He’s an imposter and he has taken meditation and distorted what it was meant to be. Let’s take it back! Meditation is not the emptying of the mind, but rather focused thinking. It is not an over-focus on self. It should be a focus on God and God-inspired images, thoughts, words, scriptures, and sensations.
Holistic Benefits of Meditation:
- Teaches us how to be still
- Cures our adrenaline addictions
- Gives us time to catch our breath and breathe more deeply
- We can think on things that are true to combat the lies we are bombarded with
- Fosters gratitude to override discontentment and complaining
- Opens our hearts and ears to hear God more frequently and clearly
- Gain peace and acceptance of life just as it is without trying to change anything
- We get a pause and a mini-Sabbath from life’s busyness
- Slows the mind down, restores the body, supercharges the spirit!
- Find a quiet place where there is solitude
- Choose a posture that facilitates openness, humility, relaxation, or reverence of God (i.e. head tilted up or down, torso erect or bowed down, hands folded or opened, etc)
- Set a timer for 2-5-10-15-30 minutes
- Choose a God-focused thought, picture, phrase, scripture, word, to focus intently on or just focus on your breath (breathing in God and exhaling all that is not God)
- As you focus, continue to breathe naturally but fully (don’t judge how often you get distracted, just practice gently bringing your mind back)
- When the timer goes off, show gratitude for what you learned and resume your day
- Find time daily to strengthen your meditation muscle
If you are still skeptical, consider what Rick Warren says, “If you worry, you already know how to meditate”.
Some good apps to try are Abide, Calm, and Pacifica