Reading the Bible is the most transformative practice a Christian can partake in. It's where God has revealed himself most fully; where we learn about how God came to us through his Son Jesus; where we see God's law and how we've all broken it; and it's where we learn that Christ died as a sinless substitute for sinners to bring us to God through faith and repentance. This is living, active, soul-piercing, heart-discerning transformation (Hebrews 4:12), and it’s found nowhere else.
But if you’re like me, many days you read the Bible, shut it, and shortly after you can’t remember a lick of what you read! So what are we to do? What’s the “key” to this promised transformation? It can be summed up in a word: meditation. Not a cooky, mystical emptying of the mind and freeing of the spirit, but a filling of the mind with the truths of Scripture.
Author Donald Whitney says it like this: “Meditation on Scripture is letting the Bible brew in the brain...Meditation is the absorption of Scripture. And it’s the absorption of Scripture that leads to the experience with God and the transformation of life we long for…”
One of the many practical ways Whitney suggests to fill your mind with the truth of Scripture is to create an artistic expression of it. A picture, a painting, a song, anything to give a tangible expression to your meditation. Pastor and theologian Jonathan Edwards practiced this often: “walking alone in the woods, and solitary places, for meditation, soliloquy, and prayer, and converse with God;... it was always my manner, at such times, to sing forth my contemplations.”
I love to write. So here is a poem on my recent meditation of Isaiah 49:1-2. I hope it isn’t too painful to read. But I also pray that the truth it expresses warms your heart as it did mine, and encourages you to meditate on what you read from God’s word…