Have you ever been walking, say, to the nearest grocery store, and you have no memory of getting there?
Or perhaps you find yourself listening to your lecturer or speaker, then you slowly mentally drift back home, and now you’re worried that you left your door open or a running tap in your kitchen?
This state is called mental wandering. It’s the practice of not being in the present moment. You’re usually trying to review the past and perhaps correct it, or you’re trying to figure out the future.
The truth is, in between your day-to-day stress, you often switch to auto piloting. When you autopilot, you execute your daily tasks without paying much attention to them. That way, you can drive to work and back and fail to notice that the trees along the road have been cut down. Most importantly, if you’re a Christian, you miss the moments that remind you God is always with you.
When you’re in this state, you aren’t mindful. This article will dig deeper into what it means to boost Christian mindfulness. It’ll further address Christian mindfulness and how you can build that muscle over time. Keep reading to learn more.
- What Is Mindfulness
The practice of focusing on the present intentionally and not being distracted by other thoughts—clearing the noise from your head.
The Zen Buddhist initially introduced the concept of mindfulness as a Buddhist discipline. For a long time, Buddhists have practiced meditation to harness mindfulness. They believe being mindful will help them reach nirvana, a state of peace, happiness, and the epitome of enlightenment.
Through the years, the concept of mindfulness has evolved, and it has been adopted in different religions like Christianity.
Today, the cases of mental illness have increased. More and more people suffer from depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions—necessitated innovative ways to cope with the situations. Therefore, psychiatrists have since adapted ideas like mindfulness to cope with conditions like anxiety and depression.
According to experts, when you focus on the now, whether good or bad, you’re more equipped not to be overwhelmed by what is happening. When you aren’t overwhelmed, your stress levels are more manageable, and hence you’ll hardly suffer from conditions like anxiety.
So then, what is Christian mindfulness?
- Christain Mindfulness
Christian mindfulness follows the same concept: clear the noise and be present now. However, being present means being aware of God’s constant presence in your life. That God is always with you, and He’s constantly actively involved in your daily activities.
According to Acts 17:28, human beings live, move and have their being in God. Therefore, the Lord is always with you, and he dwells amongst you and your people.
Mindfulness encourages Christians to pay more attention to the fine details of God’s involvement in their life. Through being mindful of Christ, you’re able to build a personal relationship with God, and you can harness the power he renews in you to face every day.
One of the renowned acts of building mindfulness is practicing meditation. The next point will look at meditation. You may want to buy a ” Meditation Pillow“ as you begin your journey on being a more mindful Christian.
Here’re tips to help you boost Christian mindfulness:
When you hear the word meditation, you’re most likely picturing yourself sited on the floor, legs crossed, hands suspended in the air as you repeat mantras. Well, quite honestly, you aren’t to blame. This secular meditation has been painted in modern life. However, this isn’t what Christian meditation is.
For starters, there’s no specific position to be in for you to meditate. With that said, you may want to remain comfortable by using these handmade:
of meditation pillows.
Secondly, mediation isn’t about expressing your desires or needs to God. During mediation, you do less of the talking and more of listening. In that particular moment, you’re required to yearn to listen to God and obey him. Therefore, chanting mantras are most definitely not a part of Christian meditation. In fact, in Matthew 6:7, The Bible warns Christians against using empty phrases as they pray.
So, what exactly is meditation in the Christian content?
As mentioned before, Chrisitan meditation is about listening to God. It isn’t the time to pray, worship, or intercede. You only have to sit in stillness and hear from God. It’s one of the few chances you have to listen to God.
Think of all the times you have presented your petition to God. All your requests. Have you ever set aside time to hear back from him? When does He intend to answer your prayers if He hasn’t already? Well, meditation is the best time to listen to what God says about you. Also, since you aren’t encouraged to talk during meditation, it’s recommended that you do it preferably after your devotion. You’ll have had a chance to speak to God, and you’ll get feedback from Him during meditation
2. Read The Bible Often
How many times do you read the Bible in a day?
No, you aren’t allowed to count the summons on Sunday. If you’re anything like I am, and many other contemporary Christians, you only read the Bible when your pastor requests you to turn to a given book. While you may not see any problem with that, the truth is you’re missing out on a lot of knowledge about God.
The Bible is the word of the Lord. Therefore, the quickest and easiest way to know and learn about God and what He demands from you. If you’re going to be aware of God’s presence in your everyday life, you may want to know more about Him. That way, you can quickly identify His presence in your life and how He works.
If you have been struggling to incorporate a culture of reading the Bible, here’re some of the tips you can use:
- Instead of turning to TikTok or any other social media when you’re free, put your phone down and pick your Bible. It works best when you have a physical Bible than the one in an App. However, sometimes the App Bible can come in handy since it’s easier to scroll from Twitter to the Bible App than putting your phone away.
- With time build a routine of when you’ll be reading the Bible and for how long. Have a guide to reading your Bible. Remember, you aren’t just reading a couple of words or stories. You’re trying to know God more and better.
- Sometimes, switching from your mundane activity to reading the Bible can be pretty challenging. That’s why you should consider having a devotion moment. It helps you invite the presence of God within you. That way, you’re in a better mood to read the word of the Lord and form a connection with Him.
- Read the Bible verse and take time to meditate on it. What is the Holy Spirit telling you through that verse? What have you learned? Has the verse prompted any prayer or request to God? If yes. Take time and pray about it.
- Lastly, always thank God for his word. If the word wasn’t clear, ask him to reveal more of its meaning to you and close your bible reading session.
3. Take Deep Breaths
Deep breathing has always been used to ground oneself, especially when anxious. For example, if you’re having a stressful day and you’re increasingly becoming tense due to stress, stepping aside from your work to take deep breaths and focusing on them may help you calm down.
The trick here isn’t taking deep breaths but focusing on the sensation of breathing. Breathing is essential for your survival, yet when you concentrate on it, you realize it’s never actually within your control of how you breathe. It, therefore, reminds you there’s something bigger than you, God. You start appreciating God better and trusting him with your everyday stress. As a result, your pressure goes down, and so does anxiety.
Follow the following steps for this exercise:
- Step 1
Suppose it’s your first time; set your timer for at least 3 minutes. It may look like a short time but centering your thoughts in one place is hard, and three minutes can easily look like a lifetime.
- Step 2
Relax your eyelids so that your eyes are closed halfway.
- Step 3
Start centering your thoughts on your physical sensations. Pay attention to your breathing while still reminding yourself that God gives you that breath. Focus on how the breath comes into your body and how it exists without you having to direct it. Notice how the action is involuntary, not in your control, and yet still it’s the reason you’re alive.
- Step 4
Continue to focus on how you breathe until the timer goes off.
- Step 5
When the timer goes off, take a moment to write down how It felt to breathe and other pondering thoughts you may have about the experience.
- Step 6
Finally, thank God for your body as the temple of the Holy Spirit. Also, thank him for the breath of life and for allowing you to see another day.
4. Pray For Others
For a long time, the concept of mindfulness has been fought amongst Christians. Some Christians are convinced that by clearing out the noise and focusing on the present, they may remain empty and be prone to demonic attacks.
Other Christians are concerned that mindfulness may make them self-centered. That’s why when it comes to prayers, you’re advised to pray for others and not yourself. It helps take away the attention from yourself. Besides, when you intercede for your friend, family, neighbor, nation, or even stranger, it helps you build empathy. You’re able to care for someone else other than yourself.
During prayer, try to picture the person you’re praying for, then invite the presence of God. Pray, believing that God hears prayers and He’ll meet the person at their points of need.
On top of that, make a habit of praying regularly. In I Thessalonians 5v17, the Bible says that pray without ceasing. It means praying regularly.
5. Appreciate God’s Creation
Noticing God’s presence amongst human beings is sometimes as easy as marveling at his creation. According to Romans 1:20, God shows his characteristics through nature. He reveals himself through nature. Because you see God in his creation, you’re constantly reminded of his presence in your life. Moreover, appreciating God’s creation helps you get a glimpse of how powerful He is.
However, the problem is that you’re waiting until you go on a vacation to the quiet beach or for a hike to the mountains to appreciate God’s work of creation. You don’t have to afford a vacation. God’s creation is everywhere. Start with what you have.
Step away from your computer’s screen and stand next to your office window. Stare far into the horizon. It could be the blue sky or the trees enclosing your offices.
Stare intentionally into whatever God’s creation is out there. You’ll begin to marvel at His work. You’ll notice how intentional God is with his creation. There’s so much detail in His work. For example, you may see that the trees swing in a given pattern, and the birds can still build a nest on the swinging tree. As you watch and appreciate God’s creation, always take time and thank Him for creating the Universe allowing you to experience it in that particular moment.
The hack to appreciating God’s creation is being intentional. Therefore, here’s a list of things you may want to look out for to build a habit of ap God’s work of nature.
- The sunrise and sunset. Take note of the color blend. Marvel at the artistic nature of God
- The moon and the stars
- Notice the change in weather
- Go outdoors and allow the wind to blow past you. Listen to the intensity of the wind and the calm it brings
- Wake up early in the morning and listen to the chirping of the birds
- Be a plant mom or dad. Take care of your plants and take time to study them.
Generally, being present in He now and keeping away other distractive thoughts isn’t easy. Therefore, Christian mindfulness is equally as hard if not twice as hard to master. It’s a skill that you have to build over time.
You can start by using the five tips discussed above to construct Christian mindfulness.
All the best!