How to Pray: Christian Meditation

Illustration of Christian Meditation

Christians have been exploring meditation since the early Church. By setting aside time to meet God in the quiet, meditation can help us grow closer to God. Through this type of prayer, we discover who we are, what God desires for us, and continually discover just how mysterious and incredible God is. 

Meditation is above all a quest…To the extent that we are humble and faithful, we discover in meditation the movements that stir the heart and we are able to discern them. It is a question of acting truthfully in order to come into the light: “Lord, what do you want me to do?” 

Catechism of the Catholic Church

Christian meditation should not be confused with the secular practice of mindfulness meditation. The difference is that instead of emptying our mind of all thoughts to find peace, we enter into silence with God to fill our hearts with His presence. In fact, Christian meditation is the type of prayer that started us on our journey with Hallow – we desired mindfulness meditation that didn’t stop with us, but instead led us closer to God. 

The key to Christian meditation is that the object of our meditation helps us focus on, and grow closer to, God. There are many types of meditation, such as meditating on Scripture with Lectio Divina, meditating on sacred art, or meditating on moments of Jesus’ life in the Rosary.

So, how do you pray through meditation? 

First, find a place to pray. It can be anywhere: a floor, a chair, a couch, a bench, even outside walking. It just needs to be a space of calm and quiet. You want to be in a position that is comfortable, but alert (you don’t want to fall asleep).  

Take a moment to quiet your heart and mind. Take some deep breaths and set aside all distractions. Think of the intent of your time in prayer – you’re doing this to grow closer with God. 

Choose what you will meditate with: It could be a prayer like “Come, Holy Spirit,” a Scripture passage, the Rosary, an image, etc. In our first meditation session in Hallow, we encourage you to imagine yourself sitting on a bench next to God. What does God say? What do you say? How do you feel? If you find yourself distracted, gently turn your mind back to this image or prayer.

Take some time to simply rest with God. Don’t try to force any thoughts, but instead embrace time in silence to be in God’s presence. Ask God to lead you in your prayer.

Close by thanking God for this time, and ask for help to bring Him into your day. You might end with an Our Father or another prayer praising God. As you finish, try not to move or check your phone right away, but instead take one more moment to let yourself rest in the peace of God.

Hallow is full of meditations for you to pray with. You can start with our Intro Challenge, in which the first three days introduce you to the practice of Christian Meditation. There are meditations in all the Praylists, Sleep section, Dailies, and many of the Challenges. There are so many ways to pray through Christian meditation, so if one way or prayer doesn’t resonate with you, give a different one a try. We hope you’ll join us in prayer!