Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Devotions Discipline Meditations

(Originally journaled Sept. 23, 2016)

I'm wondering: I was brought up to have "discipline" in my "devotions." And there's value in that because I really do believe our "flesh" and "the enemy" are opposed to any communication/relationship we might have with You. And it seems like prayer and Bible and devotional readings are hard to maintain as a "habitual" thing to do. So no doubt having a "discipline" and a "plan" is helpful, especially for me, anyway, as it is easy for me to fall off my "devotional schedule."

But yesterday I was reading in "He Loves Me" that (sometimes at least) it is better to just set aside time to listen to Your still small voice. Because that is more about relationship building with You that a more "intellectual/ reasoning/ doctrinal/ dogmatic" approach often is. So maybe it's okay to just sit and listen sometimes? Or at least back off a tad from the "disciplined plan"?

I'm not very good at "just listening." I do try to pay attention to what's going on in my life, and in the word around me, and think about what You may be saying through those circumstances ... and also through the Bible reading and devotionals and my formal written prayers and all ... and I think I am hearing more (and even learning, trusting and obeying).

But I'm not so good at "meditating with a candle" or with music, or just sitting in silence and dimness, or even in silence outside in nature or whatever. I do have some worry about "meditation" I think--fear that has grown out of teachings against "mysticism" and "meditation" that "can open you up to evil forces." (Because I remember that kind of teaching ... not surprising, since I grew up in the 60s and early 70s when there was a lot of "eastern mysticism" going on, and drugs and all.)

But--if meditation is directed toward You, and I ask You to guide it and to speak to me through it? You'd honour that, wouldn't You? You communicate with us in a multitude of ways, don't You? And we are to listen for Your "still, small voice," right? And it can be hard to hear sometimes--not only in our busy everyday lives, but maybe also when we make our "devotions" so "disciplined" and "ordered" and "reasonable" and yes, even "safe," that we can't really hear what new thing You might be trying to say to us.  At least, that last bit seems to be what I'm hearing from You right now (and hopefully not from "my mind" or the enemy...)

(And maybe sometimes I do need to stop writing, too, and just be still and quiet from my side. And listen to Your side of the conversation.)

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