As there are basics for maintaining physical life (food, water, sleep, and exercise), so there are fundamentals for maintaining one’s spiritual life. Interestingly, AA’s 11th step identifies the ingredients: “Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God…”
Maintenance commences with meditation. In the Bible “meditate” is a rather humorous picture word. Literally, it means: a cow chewing its cud. So, meditation is the act of chewing a portion of the Bible over and over until it becomes a part of us. I rise before dawn that I may meditate on your promise. (Psalm 119:147-148) “Meditation is the activity of calling to mind, and thinking over, and dwelling on, and applying to oneself, the various things that one knows about the works and ways and purposes and promises of God.” (J. I. Packer)
In concert with meditation is prayer, “a loving conversation with the One who has invited us into His embrace.” (Richard J. Foster)
The first century Greek philosopher wrote: “We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak.”
Praying is TALKING TO God. One’s address should include praise, thanksgiving, confession, and requests about everything. If it concerns you, it concerns Him. No subject is “off-limits”! “Do not worry about “proper” praying, just talk to God. Share your hurts, share your sorrows, share your joys – freely and openly. God listens in compassion and love, just like we do when our children come to us.” (Richard J. Foster)
Prayer is also LISTENING TO God. The Bible reveals a “talking God!” The Lord called out to the man … The man answered … (Genesis 3:9-10) The Bible itself is the result of God speaking to people. All Scripture is inspired by God … (2 Timothy 3:16) Simplistically one might say, “God spoke and humans wrote.”
HOW does God speak to us? Conversation is “thought expression.” Similarly, God employs thoughts to converse with us.
A branch must stay connected to the vine to bear fruit. It is the same with you. John 15:4