One of the greatest promises in the Bible is found in Psalm 1:2-3. This passage teaches that if we meditate on God’s Word day and night we will be “like a tree firmly planted by streams of water” (NAS). Here is the secret to the consistent Christian life.
But how does a person meditate day and night? One obvious way is to stay awake 24 hours a day. However, there is a less strenuous way to accomplish this.
Have you ever awakened in the night feeling rigid and tense? Have you ever gone to bed with a problem in your mind, and awakened the next morning exhausted-as though you had worked through the night? Have you ever noticed that your last thought of the day is usually your first thought of the next morning? Many people believe that these phenomena indicate that our subconscious minds keep on working while we are asleep.
When a person sleeps, his conscious mind rests while his subconscious mind continues to function in order to keep the body’s organs working. But the conscious and the subconscious are in a closed-circuit relationship, so whatever the conscious was working on prior to his falling asleep will be transmitted to the subconscious.
Too often we are wrestling with a problem just before we go to sleep. So rather than allowing the subconscious to work on our problems and worries, we can meditate on the Word of God while we sleep.
A simple application of this theory is to read the passage intended for the next morning’s quiet time just before you go to sleep. Take about three minutes to scan through the passage and ask God to give you a thought that will help you live for Him the next day. Take this thought with you to bed.
Your subconscious mind will work on the thought while you sleep, and you will probably have the same thought in your mind the next morning. The writer of the Proverbs may be alluding to this when he writes, “When you walk about, they will guide you; When you sleep, they will watch over you; And when you awake, they will talk to you” (Proverbs 6:22, NAS).
Make God’s Word your last word every day, and with the help of the subconscious mind you will be able to meditate on the Word “day and night.”
Adapted from Meditation, May 9, 2011. Used with permission by NavPress.