Here’s a slightly edited post from 2012 that deserves a fresh look . . .
Throughout history, one of the most time-honored ways of hearing the still, small voice of GOD is to sit still with Holy Scripture, yield yourself to the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and listen for what may come to you. The historic practice of Lectio Divina, long neglected, is now making a come back. This kind of listening for GOD can also be done with a piece of art, an icon, something in your garden . . . anything (I call this kind of visual meditation “visio divina”).
Below I briefly outline 25 things to keep in mind when you meditate on a scripture text.
I know, 25 is a lot to keep in mind. But you'll see from the list that they're quite simple, and repetitive. You may even find them predictable. I do that on purpose, to reinforce these simple ways.
So, read a short passage of Scripture, slowly, letting a word, phrase, or image in the text gather your attention, and then . . .
1. Sit still and straight. Feet on the floor. Your body relaxed.
2. Call upon GOD with a simple prayer.
3. Relax your mind, let it drift a bit, like a boat without an anchor.
4. Don't hurry.
5. Sit with the word, phrase, or image that's invited your attention.
6. Give yourself some inner space, that is, open up.
7. Relax your mind. When distracted, simply draw your thoughts back here, now.
8. When you mind wanders, come back to the word, phrase, or image.
9. Trust the Spirit as guide.
11. Let the mind graze freely within the pasture of this text: that is, let it wander in a broad meadow of the text.
12. Embrace whatever comes to you with curiosity; relinquish judgment.
13. Abandon any attempt at Bible study.
14. Arouse your senses, allow different parts of your self to interact with the text.
15. Pray for wisdom.
16. Don't judge what's happening.
17. Don't try to create a spiritual experience.
18. Did I say, listen? Listen.
19. Avoid working at this: rest in GOD.
20. Smile gentle to yourself.
21. Straighten your back again; it keeps you alert.
22. Freely associate mentally until something seems to hook you.
23. Inquire of GOD: "GOD, I'm listening. What are you communicating to me?"
24. Rest with whatever comes to you, as subtle, astonishing, or disturbing as it might be.
25. Don’t do anything about it . . . not yet. But resolve to give whatever’s come room to grow.