I have to admit that when I first started to think about writing about meditation as a form of prayer I was definitely skeptical. Meditation had always seemed like something that other faiths had practiced and not something we as Catholics should do, but goodness I was wrong! My perception of meditation was very far off from how the Catholic Church views it and it is a really great tool that can help us come closer to God. Meditation is really about quieting yourself enough that you can simply be in the presence of God.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church describes meditation in this way: “The mind seeks to understand the why and how of the Christian life, in order to adhere and respond to what the Lord is asking” (CCC 2705). When we take time to quiet our hearts and minds in the busyness of everyday life we have the opportunity to dive deeper into the mysteries of our Lord and His will for our lives.
If you are still skeptical of this whole idea of meditation there is actually a great saint who wrote a multitude of writings and specifically talked about mental prayer (meditation) in them. In An Introduction to the Devout Life, St. Francis De Sales writes, “I specially recommend mental prayer, and the prayer of the heart, in particular meditation on the life and passion of our Lord.” He says that it is important to start this meditation in the presence of our Lord. This can be in your local church, adoration chapel, or even in your own home if you have created a prayer corner that you can quiet yourself in. I have found that when I am in front of our Lord in Eucharistic Adoration I have an easier time to quiet myself and truly meditate on the glory of our Lord. There is something beautiful and glorious about looking the Lord in the face while sitting in His presence. During these moments of meditation in front of the Lord in the Eucharist I have truly been able to experience the love and joys of the Lord. He has been my consolation through the hard times and the One I share my joys with. I encourage all of you to spend time quieting yourself each day with the Lord. Time spent with Him is never wasted and will always benefit us more than we could even imagine.
Reflect and Discuss: Do you have a place where you can quiet yourself and simply be with the Lord each day? What things are on your heart today that you can bring to the Lord and discuss with Him in prayer and meditation?
Act: Spend at least ten minutes today quieting yourself and reflect on all of the blessings the Lord has bestowed on you. Thank Him for both the joys and the sorrows of this day.