Memorizing scripture can be intimidating. It’s a big book. Where do you start? How do you fit it into your already busy brain? I collected a few resources for us to review. Pick a system that works for you. Be open to change methods if it is not working for you. In the end, it’s not about how you do it, but that you do it.
My favorite resource and encouragement has been this series on Revive Our Hearts. I love Janet Pope’s heart for scripture. She has memorized books of the Bible. Books!
What Do I Memorize?
Nancy Leigh DeMoss recommends choosing verses that speak to a need or concern in your life. It will be easier and more meaningful it that scripture ministers to you as you meditate on it.
It is important to think about the passage you are trying to memorize. By meditating on it, the words take root in your heart. When they contain meaning, the words are easier to memorize.
How Many Verses Do I Memorize?
That is a question only you can answer. What do you sense God calling you to do? I have made efforts to memorize scripture in the past, but nothing systematic. This year, as I prayed over my goals, I landed on two verses a month. This allows me time to let is soak in, take root, and begin to bloom before I move on to the next one. I also didn’t want to set my goal so high that I became discouraged early in the game.
Beth Moore says, “1 verse every 2 weeks. If you do much more, you’ll tend to fall behind and not retain. If you do much less, the impact is negligible.” However, Janet Pope memorizes books of the Bible at a time. I love the idea of setting a goal that is much bigger than my ability. I am considering this kind of goal for 2016!
What is the Best Method?
There is a general consensus that index cards or little notebook is the way to go. I have spiral bound index cards by my sink. This works for my goal of memorizing 2 verses a month. If I were trying to memorize larger portions of scripture, taking that notebook with me everywhere I go would be a great way to redeem my time.
There is no doubt, repetition is your ally! Mary Margaret Collingsworth gives some ideas: “For some of you, that means writing the verse out several times, and for others, it’s saying it out loud. It may even be helpful for you to draw a picture that reminds you of the verse.”
How Do I Fit It In?
Nancy Epperson and Janet Pope advise us to redeem the time. Find pockets of “un-thinking” to recite scripture. Work on it when you blow-dry your hair, as you drive, while you wait in line at the grocery store. Keeping your spiral notebook or index card with you will help you find those small pockets of time to work on it.
Okay, you’re not going to be able to add Scripture memory to your day. It’s already full. So put Scripture memory with things you’re already doing. Janet Pope
The truth is, we make time for what is important to us. Consider how you spend that 5 minutes waiting on the coffee to brew or sitting on the toilet (lid down!) while your children play mermaid in the tub. Do you read through news feeds and pin pins? Could that time be spent memorizing and reviewing God’s Word instead?
Accountability can empower your efforts to memorize scripture. Memorizing passages with a sister in Christ or your spouse provides encouragement and devotion. I joined Living Proof Ministry’s Siesta Scripture Memory Team this year. On the 1st and 15th of every month, sisters from around the world post their verse. Additionally, I have a friend who pokes me on the 1st and 15th so I remember (thanks, Christy!).
How Do I Remember Them All?
Nancy Leigh DeMoss says, “Once you have mastered a verse or a paragraph, go on to the next, but review daily the verses you have memorized most recently.” Review a passage until it is solidly in your memory. Keep index cards of older verses posted around to review from time to time.
Consider turning some of your memory verses into art around your home. Print it, mat it, and frame it. Having theme placed around your home will help you and your family hide God’s Word in your heart.
Scripture memory is more than a discipline; it is an expression of a heart hungry for God’s Word. What step will you take today to feed that hunger?