How do you meditate on Scripture? I’ve heard the question many times. I’ve even asked it myself many times. Even when the question is answered it isn’t always clear. The real question is – What is the process for meditation? What exactly do I do? In this post I’m going to (hopefully) give you the how to meditate on Scripture with 1) a summary and 2) a point-by-point breakdown.
I’ve adapted this instruction from Dr. Joel Beeke’s chapter, Learn from the Puritans I, in Dear Timothy: Letters on Pastoral Ministry, edited by Dr. Tom Ascol, pages 226-230. The points I’m presenting here are my understanding of what Dr. Beeke wrote in those pages. I am to blame for any incorrect or misconstrued information.
Pray. Select a verse/doctrine most applicable. Memorize. Focus on what God says on the subject. Think freely. Keep thoughts focused. Stir up emotions. Think of God’s work in your life. Be excited about what God has done/will do. Live out/practice the meditations. Make resolutions. Commit. Pray.
- Ask the Holy Spirit for assistance.
- Pray for focus that you would use your eyes of faith.
- Select a doctrine or verse to meditate on (start small with one subject at a time before moving to complex doctrines i.e. the Trinity).
- Choose topics that are most applicable to current circumstances and needs.
- Memorize chosen passages(s) or a facet of the subject for guidance.
- Using what you chose to memorize focus your thoughts on what God says about this subject.
- Focus your thoughts going through all different angles of your subject even positions contrary/opposite of it.
- Do not get stuck in a certain method of thought as you meditate.
- Do not let your mind wander, control your thoughts, pray, refocus, perservere.
- Strip up a range of emotions considering your sin and shortcomings while trusting God inspite of them.
- Dive into your soul with these emotions thinking on God’s greatness.
- Honestly assess your own sanctification in your walk with the Lord.
- Excite yourself about the grace of God in your life and the growth to come.
- Live out your meditations and keep practicing them.
- Draw up resolutions based on your meditations.
- Focus your resolutions on growing in Christ by fighting sin and relying on Him.
- Write down your resolutions and be committed to them.
- Close your meditation with prayer.
It’s not as complicated at it may seem. Just think through your actions as you read this how to. I’m no prophet, but I don’t believe God is going to be unhappy if you seek Him in this way. And don’t be afraid to just do it. Don’t give up. Persevere.
I’d like to add a final suggestion. Get a little Moleskine notebook (or any kind) that fits in your pocket or purse. Use this to write down your meditation(s) and/or resolution(s) and carry them with you. This way you will have them and can refer to them at practically anytime.
I pray this is edifying.
A fellow servant…