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Christian Mindfulness

Philipians  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Notes & Transcripts

Introduction

So far in our series
mercia
We have looked out so that we do not loose the forest for the trees.
We have looked up and not down. So that we do not get anxious as we remember God is caring for us.
This week we look in. As we consider our own thoughts and we discern what is good to think about.
We could summerise this as look out, look up look in.
More and more people see that healthy thinking is very important .
Sometimes called Mindlfulness or meditation
Mindlfulness
What is it? Some Christians are very sucipisious of meditation and mindfulness. They see it as an eastern Religious practice. Images come to mind of someone sitting cross legged on a matt with burning incense and a candel.
The eastern religions like budism and hinduism do have forms of meditation. In these religions the purpose of meditation is to empty your mind and not think about anything at all. This has been shown to reduce stress and so it has become popularised and there are lots of non religious secular meditation techniques that more or less follow this principal of not thinking about problems.
In more recent times the whole mindfulness movement has popped up. This involves helping someone be present in the moment. There are a whole lot of books written on the topic and loads of apps on the app store that help people slow their Breathing, be thankful and be generious.
Web Sites: Headspace, MindfulnessWorks Australia 114
Show a few Apps: http://www.psychologicalhealthcare.com.au/blog/5-top-mindfulness-apps-recommended-by-psychologists/
apple watch: http://www.macworld.co.uk/feature/iphone/what-is-breathe-for-apple-watch-how-use-apple-breathe-app-in-watchos-3-3643692/
Cronulla Sharks: The sharks train their players in mindfulness. Asked me to do a seminar on spirituality.
Again Christians are sometimes wary of this movement too. But in the Bible there is both encouragement to meditate and to be pressent.
In a stressed out world Christians have often neglegted meditating and being mindful. Rather we tend to want to know about God or experience him rather than meditate on him and let his precence help us to be mindful.
Here are some passages in the Bible that talk about meditation that show us the benefits of meditation:
Genesis 24:63 NIV
He went out to the field one evening to meditate, and as he looked up, he saw camels approaching.
You mind start to meditate and then after you have finished look up and see camels. Haha. Just joking. What this passage shows us is that meditation can be a regular practice that is so beneficial that we might want to do it regularily. Here Isaac goes out for his regular time of meditation and meets Rebecca his future wife.
Joshua 1:8 NIV
Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.
Here Joshua tell the people of Israel that meditation is a good daily practice. He also shows here the outcome of meditating is not just know the Bible but it will effect your actions. You will know the word and do what it says. This will lead to prosperity and success for the people who have measured the rythms of their life with the Rythms of God’s word.
Psalm 1:2 NIV
but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night.
This rythm of life can be delightful, not a chore but an important part of life that will help you to become closer with God your creator and your saviour and your sustainer.
Psalm 19:14 NIV
May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.
This not only makes us happy but it also makes God happy too.
Psalm 77:12 NIV
I will consider all your works and meditate on all your mighty deeds.”
Psalm 77:6 NIV
I remembered my songs in the night. My heart meditated and my spirit asked:
We remember his power to save and his promise to save us.
Ps 77
Psalm 119:23 NIV
Though rulers sit together and slander me, your servant will meditate on your decrees.
Ps 119
This
Very calming when you are facing conflict situations.
So we are actually encouraged to meditate. But unlike Eastern Meditation, Christian meditation is about thinking about Good things about God and what he teaches us about ourselves. Rather than meditating on nothing we are encouraged to meditate on God and his words to us. So the Bible taught meditation and mindfulness long before the current mindfulness movement.
Our passage tonight deals with a form of positive thinking, you could call it a guide to Christian meditation, or Christian mindfulness.
relax in God

The Big Idea

Learn to Think Good Things

6 Good Things

Passage

Philippians 4:8 NIV
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
Phil
True:
Noble:
Right:
Pure:
Lovely:

Explain

These are qualities which are good for us and good for others. These qualities were popular in the moral philosophy at the time of Paul. Paul lists 6 positive ethical qualities and then sumerises them describing them to show how they help shape your lifestyle.
Finally or in addition brothers and sisters:
Whatever is true
What ever is noble
Whatever is right
Whatever is pure
Whatever is lovely
Noble:
Admirable
Right:
If anything is excellent or praiseworthy

The catalog of virtues Paul sums up in two words: excellent and praiseworthy. The first encompasses what is best in every area of life, the philosophical good for which every person should strive. Here it is especially the ethical best a person can achieve. The second term refers to that which deserves human praise. The catalog of virtues thus reflects the best life a person can live and the best reputation a person can thereby achieve in the community.

Finally, in this verse, Paul gets to his point: think on these things. That, joined with prayer will relieve all anxieties and lead one to praise God and live life the way he desires.

Pure:
2 Corinthians 10:2–5 NIV
I beg you that when I come I may not have to be as bold as I expect to be toward some people who think that we live by the standards of this world. For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
2 Corinthians 10:2–5 NIV
I beg you that when I come I may not have to be as bold as I expect to be toward some people who think that we live by the standards of this world. For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
destry arguments
2 cor 10:2-5
2 cor 10:2-5
take thoughts captive
Lovely:
I have wept over things I have submitting my world view
dismatle me if necessary
ask Holy spirit to work.
we don’t fight with flesh. divine power
Raging lion defeated.
Romans 15:18 NIV
I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what I have said and done—
Rom 15:18
what is in us Holy spirit and
what is in us Holy spirit an
fight the fight of faith sinful nature spirit
argue against worldly arguments
take thoughts captive

Illustrate

destroy castle take captives

Apply

Paul destroy the ungodly thoughts I have

1. Whatever is true

Passage

True is that which corresponds to reality. Anxiety comes when false ideas and unreal circumstances occupy the mind instead of truth. Ultimately, thinking on the truth is thinking on Jesus, who is the truth (; )
John 14:6 NIV
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
Ephesians 4:21 NIV
when you heard about Christ and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus.

Illustrate

Apply

2. What ever is noble

Noble refers to lofty, majestic, awesome things, things that lift the mind above the world’s dirt and scandal.

Passage

Noble refers to lofty, majestic, awesome things, things that lift the mind above the world’s dirt and scandal.

Explain

Illustrate

Apply

Nuro plasticity

3. Whatever is right

Right refers to that which is fair to all parties involved, that which fulfills all obligations and debts. Thinking right thoughts steers one away from quarrels and dissensions to think of the needs and rights of the other party.

Right refers to that which is fair to all parties involved, that which fulfills all obligations and debts. Thinking right thoughts steers one away from quarrels and dissensions to think of the needs and rights of the other party.

Explain

Illustrate

Apply

4. Whatever is pure

Pure casts its net of meaning over all of life from sexual acts to noble thoughts to moral and ritual readiness for worship. Thinking on the pure leads one away from sin and shame and toward God and worship.

Pure casts its net of meaning over all of life from sexual acts to noble thoughts to moral and ritual readiness for worship. Thinking on the pure leads one away from sin and shame and toward God and worship.

Passage

Explain

Illustrate

Apply

5. Whatever is lovely

Lovely is a rare word referring to things that attract, please, and win other people’s admiration and affection. Such thoughts bring people together in peace rather than separating them in fighting and feuding.

Lovely is a rare word referring to things that attract, please, and win other people’s admiration and affection. Such thoughts bring people together in peace rather than separating them in fighting and feuding.

Passage

Explain

Illustrate

Apply

6. If anything is admirable

Admirable is something worthy of praise or approval, that which deserves a good reputation. Pondering ways to protect one’s moral and spiritual image in the community leads away from worries about circumstances and possessions that project a different image to the community and which thinking cannot change.

Passage

Admirable is something worthy of praise or approval, that which deserves a good reputation. Pondering ways to protect one’s moral and spiritual image in the community leads away from worries about circumstances and possessions that project a different image to the community and which thinking cannot change.

Admirable is something worthy of praise or approval, that which deserves a good reputation. Pondering ways to protect one’s moral and spiritual image in the community leads away from worries about circumstances and possessions that project a different image to the community and which thinking cannot change.

Explain

Illustrate

Apply

6. If anything is excellent or praiseworthy

The catalog of virtues Paul sums up in two words: excellent and praiseworthy. The first encompasses what is best in every area of life, the philosophical good for which every person should strive. Here it is especially the ethical best a person can achieve. The second term refers to that which deserves human praise. The catalog of virtues thus reflects the best life a person can live and the best reputation a person can thereby achieve in the community.

Passage

The catalog of virtues Paul sums up in two words: excellent and praiseworthy. The first encompasses what is best in every area of life, the philosophical good for which every person should strive. Here it is especially the ethical best a person can achieve. The second term refers to that which deserves human praise. The catalog of virtues thus reflects the best life a person can live and the best reputation a person can thereby achieve in the community.

Explain

Illustrate

Apply

Conclusion

Finally, in this verse, Paul gets to his point: think on these things. That, joined with prayer will relieve all anxieties and lead one to praise God and live life the way he desires.

Finally, in this verse, Paul gets to his point: think on these things. That, joined with prayer will relieve all anxieties and lead one to praise God and live life the way he desires.
2 Corinthians 10:2–5 NIV
I beg you that when I come I may not have to be as bold as I expect to be toward some people who think that we live by the standards of this world. For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
destry arguments
take thoughts captive

Explain

I have wept over things I have submitting my world view
dismatle me if necessary
ask Holy spirit to work.

Illustrate

we don’t fight with flesh. divine power
Raging lion defeated.
Romans 15:18 NIV
I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what I have said and done—
what is in us Holy spirit and
fight the fight of faith sinful nature spirit

Illustrate

destroy castle take captives

Apply

Paul destroy the ungodly thoughts I have

Apply

Here is what I do: I breathe. I read, I think and I pray from what I have read. Then I think of something to be thankful for, think how I can be generous and then breathe again.
While I work I keep a photo of lou on my desktop.
They way you think effects the way you act and we will look at that next week.
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