October 26

Today's Bible Reading
        II Kings 7
        I Timothy 4
        Daniel 11
        Psalms 119:25-48
“Meditate on these things; give yourself entirely to them, that your progress may be evident to all.” (I Timothy 4:15)
            Many religions, and even cults, place strong emphasis on meditation as a part of their discipline. Some of that meditation has nothing to do with God, but seems to help the people involved. Now, in our memory text, we are exhorted by the Word of God to “meditate on these things.” He has mentioned things like love, faith, purity, reading, exhortation, doctrine, and spiritual gifts. These are the kind of things that the Word of God exhorts us to meditate on. This is a reference to a genuine and intimate time spent with God. 
            What tantalizing personal benefits are offered by time spent in the presence of God in prayer! E. Stanley Jones, world renown missionary and man of prayer, explained it like this:  ''If I throw out a boat hook from the boat, and catch hold of the shore and pull, do I pull the shore to me, or do I pull myself to the shore? Prayer is not pulling God to my will, but the “aligningofmywilltothewillofGod.” This is the astounding result of meditation - time spent, intimately, with God. Meditation began for the devotional exercise of listeningto the Word. Eugene Peterson points out that Psalms 40:6 present a brilliant metaphor in the original Hebrew text that graphically teaches the necessity of listening. It literally says, “Ears you have dug for me.” The New King James Bible says, “My ears you have opened.” This emphasizes the importance to God that we have ears to hear what He is saying to us.
            So, at times, God has to take a pick and a shovel and mine through the sides of the ''cranial granite'', making openings through which His Word can pass to the mind and the heart. The result is hearing, and when the hearing is accomplished, there can be response.  The words of Scripture are not merely to be read, but to be heard. They are meant to go to the heart. 
            The importance of having our ears dug open comes to us from the lips of Jesus, “He that has an ear let him hear.” (Revelation 2:7, 11, 17, 29; 3:6, 13, 22) We need to read God’s Word, but we must also pray that He will blast through our granite blockheads so we truly hear His Word.
         When the word “meditate” is used in the Old Testament, a word is commonly used that means to mutter. This word was used to describe the murmuringsof kingsand the chatteringof doves; in fact, St. Augustine translated Psalms 1 :2, “On His law he chatters day and night.” Meditation is intrinsically verbal. This means the Psalmist memorized God's Word - for one cannot continually mutter the Scripture without memorizing it, and vice versa. The results of meditation in your life will be revival, wisdom, and it will increase your faith. This is a missing activity in the modern church and the cause of Christ suffers greatly because of it.
As you continue to pray for students throughout the world, remember that the student world has radically changed over the past decade. There are very few state-controlled universities or colleges that offer a welcome environment for Christian ministry. The ministries that reach the students will be those ministries who address needs generated by this culture shift. Several organizations are very prominent in reaching out to students. Pray for the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students, the Navigators, Campus Crusade for Christ, and many other ministries like these whose main focus is on reaching students for Christ and His church.