When I think of the word meditate a lot of different things come to mind, like that one weird character from the video game street fighter, or sweaty people sitting cross-legged around candles, but perhaps what comes to mind most is that it is something that those eastern religions practice. Let me suggest that meditating in its simplest form is primarily thinking deeply about something and let me further suggest that it is something each of us do daily. It’s called worry. We in the west have mastered the art of meditation but we have given it a different name… worrying. We say I am worried about this or that, but what we mean by it is we have been thinking deeply about this concern or that event or this problem. It turns out we have more in common with that guy from street fighter than we think!

This morning I woke up and the first thing I did was grab my phone and start scrolling through my news feed. I started my day by trying to stay on top of all the things that are going on in our world. Headlines about international flight restrictions, flattening curves, school closures and toilette paper shortages are dominating my thought life, and I doubt I am alone in this. There is much to meditate on with regards to all the problems and issues going on in our world. These words of the apostle Paul from the book of Philippians came to my mind as I was going through my newsfeed for the fifth time before breakfast.

“Whatever is true, whatever is honourable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise… Think about these things.”

The fruit of meditating on other things, or worrying as I called it, is anxiety. It’s why right before this Paul writes to not worry or be anxious about anything. Meditating on all the things that are going wrong right now will produce anxiety in our hearts. However, meditating on ‘these’ things, as Paul calls them, can produce a wonderful peace that passes all understanding. What have you spent your day thinking about, are you worrying, are you anxious or have you spent time thinking about the sovereignty of God, the sufficiency of Christ or the power of the Holy Spirit?

Over the next little while we recognize that our normal gatherings are going to be interrupted, which play a vital role in filling our minds with good, pure, lovely and commendable things to think deeply about. It is our hope that we can provide as much online content as possible that is going to be praise worthy. So, as we stay informed with what is going on in our world, let us not neglect to think about the things that will give us peace in these troubled times. Tune in regularly, tune in often at northview.org and check your inboxes and social media feeds for updates.

“What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.”

In Christ,

Pastor Jesse Schellenberg