Many years ago I was challenged by Tim Hansel's book You Gotta Keep Dancin'. Tim tells his story of climbing a glacier, falling in a crevice, crushing several vertebrae in his back, miraculously hiking out, and subsequently living with intense, irreversible, chronic pain. He shares that he chose a verse of the Bible on which he would meditate - think about - until he found the music behind the words.
As a young woman, I decided to give this a try and found it to be very rewarding. I would pick a single verse that seemed to be particularly appropriate to something in my life and then I would ponder it, day after day for a pre-determined period of time. All the while listening for the music behind the words - the deeper meaning, what God was trying to say to me. For a few years I practiced this form of meditation regularly. Now, meditation is one way that I study the Bible in the mix of a variety of methods I use to keep my study fresh and alive.
Last year I meditated on Romans 12:2 for several days. I read it in various translations and then reflected on it in my journal. Here is an excerpt from one of those ponderings:
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 know what God wants you to do,
and you will know how good and pleasing and perfect his will really is.
Transform = 1. To change markedly in form or appearance, 2. To change the nature, function, or condition of; convert or be converted.
Conform = 1. To make or become similar. 2. To act or be in agreement; comply. 3. To act in accordance with customs or rules.
Copy = 1. An imitation or reproduction of something original; duplicate.
God calls us to be different from the world around us. He calls us to conform not to the customs and behaviors of this world, but instead to take on the attitude of Christ and to live according to Kingdom principles. We are to be like Christ rather than the world around us.
What does that look like in practicality? The Amish separate themselves in the way they dress, their use of vehicles and electricity. Others avoid jewelry and celebrations. What does this look like for me? What does this look like for women I influence and teach, how do I explain this? Some avoid make-up or modern clothing . . . . I sense that this is more about the inner person that finds expression in outer behaviors than it is about following a rigid set of rules.
How do you include meditating on Scripture into your daily life?
What are some things you have learned meditating on the Bible?