I have been reading quite a lot lately on the word, mindfulness. This is a "buzz" word in our culture today. The working definition of mindfulness is taking time for what matters. We know that our Creator, the loving Father has created our being with three parts all connected as one~ body, soul and spirit. 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24 tells us, "May God Himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The ONE who calls you is faithful and HE will do it". As Christians, we invite the Spirit of the Living God to perfect and mature us in our body, soul and spirit. True mindfulness is having our spirit, body & soul or heart (mind/will/emotions/affections) in agreement with the Kingdom of God. Brother Lawrence, a 17th century monk practiced "mindfulness" before it was popular. There is a collection of letters and other documents that records his conversations, thoughts, and philosophy, mainly a development of an awareness of the presence of God~ this is true mindfulness.
Here are six practices you can do daily to align yourself to God's Kingdom:
1) When you wake in the morning, thank God for the new day. Thank the Lord that His mercies are new every morning.
"Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail, they are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness," Lamentations 3:22-23
2) Throughout the day, say "breath prayers" to keep your heart focused on the Kingdom of Heaven. Breath prayers are little phrases, "Thank you Father", "I welcome you into this circumstance, Jesus", "Holy Spirit, release peace to my mind", etc. This is a way to keep the mind stayed on Jesus.
"You will keep in perfect peace those who minds are steadfast because they trust in you." Isaiah 26:3
3) Cultivate a grateful heart. This is how we enter His Presence! In a journal or a jar, write out 5 things you are thankful for each day. Review these to be reminded on God's faithfulness to you.
"Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name," Psalm 100:4
4) Practice the Presence of God. Set the alarm on your phone or watch to every hour. When the alarm goes off, take 1 minute to connect with the Father. Close your eyes, invite Holy Spirit into the moment. Is there anything He wants to say to you? If you are in a meeting or a place that is not convenient to close your eyes, you can still connect spirit to Holy Spirit intentionally for that minute~ think about how awesome God is; that there is nothing He can't do, etc. This takes practice, but it can be done hour by hour throughout the day. This practice of His Presence is all about the posture of the heart.
"One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to seek Him in His temple," Psalm 27:4
5) Take moments throughout the day to look at the sky or the tops of the trees. Be reminded that God has created all that we see. Our Father has no lack. He has all provision for everything we need. Looking up helps us to lift our eyes onto God and His position as the highly exalted One, not to be focused on the problems or difficult circumstances.
"I lift up my eyes to the mountains~ where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth," Psalm 121:1-2
6) Meditate on God's Word. Take a phrase or section of Scripture and read it, say it, pray it back to the Lord. "Chew" on the words and phrases so they nourish your spirit, soul and body. The culture's definition of meditation is to empty the mind, God's definition of meditation is to fill your mind and thought-life with His Truth, which renews the mind and sanctifies it.
"Do not conform to the patterns of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind..." Romans 12:2
Mindfulness is paying attention to what you are thinking, speaking and acting. For believers, mindfulness is practicing the Presence of God. Let each day be a process of growing in experiencing God's beautiful Presence in your life. Watch your thought-life, speech and actions be transformed more and more into the image of Christ.