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Knowing God: Christian Meditation

As you may know, the Christian theologian J.I. Packer died this summer.

I am re-reading his book, "Knowing God". It's a classic in Christian theology.

I love this quote at the beginning of the book on what Christian meditation is:

Meditation is the activity of calling to mind, and thinking over, and dwelling on, and

applying oneself, the various things that one knows about the works and ways and

purposes and promises of God. It is an activity of holy thought, conciously performed in

the presence of God, under the eye of God, by the help of God, as a means of

communion with God. (p.23).

(You can see by how Packer writes why this books is an absolute classic and a must-read for Christians). Christian meditation for Packer is an act of worship. It's holy thinking under the care and watch of God.

Here is what Packer describes as the purpose and process in meditation. He goes on:

Its purpose is to clear one's mental and spiritual vision of God, and to let his truth make

its full and proper impact on one's mind and heart. It is a matter of talking to oneself

about God and oneself; it is, indeed, often a matter of arguing with oneself about God

and oneself, reasoning oneself out of moods of doubt and unbelief into a clear

apprehension of God's power and grace. (p.23).

I meditate and wrestle through the Bible in the mornings. It has been my habit for a number of years now. Lately, 5 am is when my alarm clock is set for. I find that I have to schedule when I will be committed to practice this spiritual discipline. I have found, along with Packer, that this process is long-game orientated. There are no quick fixes or hacks when it comes to the spiritual disciplines. He continues:

Its effect is ever to humble us, as we contemplate God's greatness and glory and our

own littleness and sinfulness, and to encourage and reassure us - "comfort" us, in the

old, strong, Bible sense of the word - as we contemplate the unsearchable riches of

divine mercy displayed in the Lord Jesus Christ. (p. 23).

In other words, this process drives us to deeper worship of the Triune God.

As a worship leader, I ever see the need for this practice in my life. I need to practice the deep Christian disciplines which prayer and meditation make up. I need a massive improvement upon my mind in the understanding of who God is. My imagination is given the opportunity to begin to explore the depths of God in meditation.

This process, described above, enlarges the mind and expands our imaginations. It allows us to explore our various disciplines with fresh perspective.

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