Be Nourished by Thinking About the Person of God
In 2003, my friends Bert and Dianne Tippett traveled to North Carolina to be present for their son Brian’s painful bone marrow test. That night in bed, Bert and Dianne throbbed with inner pain, terribly worried about Brian’s cancer. Bert was angry, and Dianne was crying. But as they began praying together, an overwhelming peace entered the room and settled on them, and they both fell asleep. The grip of fear and anxiety was broken.
Five years later, Bert himself was diagnosed with cancer, but the peace of God never left him. When people asked how he was doing, he said, “I’m enjoying perfect peace,” a secret he learned by meditating on Isaiah 26:3–4:
“You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You. Trust in the Lord forever, for in Yah, the Lord, is everlasting strength.”
Look at the two phrases at the front and back of the passage: “perfect peace” and “everlasting strength.” That’s the condition of the person whose mind is stayed on the Lord and whose heart trusts Him forever. The phrase “perfect peace” is actually “shalom, shalom.” The Hebrews didn’t have a term for superlative peace, so they simply took their great word “shalom” and doubled it. The message for us is that the Lord wants to double our peace and our calmness. He wants to impart strength for our days.
Heavenly peace comes through meditation and trust. We must “stay” our minds on Him and trust in Yah—Yahweh, Jehovah, the Lord—forever.
What does it mean to “stay” our minds on the Lord? It means to keep our minds focused on Him, to think about Him, to be devoted to Him, and to be conscious of His person, His presence, and His providence over our lives. Jesus told us to love the Lord our God with all our minds (Matthew 22:37), and the Psalmist said, “Blessed are those who fear the Lord, who find great delight in his commands” (Psalm 112:1).
Meditation is staying our minds on the Lord, loving Him with every thought, fearing Him, and delighting in His commands.
Write your own devotional book. Take a verse every day, meditate on it, and write a paragraph about its meaning to you. Consider posting your meditation, when appropriate, on social media.