Sunday, August 08, 2010

Scripture Memory

Memorizing Scripture is something that I've done on and off through my life, but have never buckled down and stuck with it. There was the summer two friends and I memorized through the book of Phillipians, and though I am quite rusty on it now, the book still has a familiarity that is precious. Early on in my life, my family and I memorized Psalm 91 together. Then there was the winter another two friends and I memorized Psalm 107. The last big accountability project was with two co-workers. We set the goal to memorize Psalm 119 in it's entirety during a summer. Some of us met that goal better than others. :-)

All of these times hold a special place in my heart. Not just because they were times spent with friends and family, but they were centered around the word of God. They built not only memories, but a greater foundation of Scripture in my heart. 

Don't just take my word for it, though. What encouragement does Scripture give? Here's just a couple of promises associated with hiding God's word in our heart. 

Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper." Psalm 1:1-3

"Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all." 1 Timothy 4:15

There are many more that can be found with a little searching. :-) I was blessed by this quote by Nancy Epperson who appeared on Nancy Leigh DeMoss's Radio Program last January. 

"As you’re memorizing and meditating, everything about it forces you to think on God’s Word. The more you spend time in the Word of God, the more you get to know the Author of that Book. The more you get to know Him, the more you love Him, because to know Him is to love Him. The more you love Him, it just kind of spills out. It just spills out all over."

But, enough of the intellectual, fluffy-feeling stuff. How does this all work? Everyone has their own method and ways of learning and retention, and I would love to hear how some of you incorporate this into your lives. Let me just throw out a few ideas for you if you haven't given this much thought. 

One things I have found helpful for memorizing, whether it be Bible verses, or Spanish verbs and their conjugations, is to write them out on flash cards. You can buy flash cards in a spiral-type notebook, or I've also laminated them, punched holes, and put them on my own ring. I usually have one or two sets riding around with me in my car as driving time is a great opportunity for memory, especially if you are alone and can work out-loud. 

There are a couple of on-line tools that are also very helpful. The first I want to share is a link one of the elders from our church shared with me. He has done extensive memorizing in his life-time, and has found this method very effective. I have used it some myself, and have found it extremely logical. I have retained Scripture, and stuck with memory work using this method more than any other one I have ever tried. 

The last I wanted to share was an online program a dear friend recently showed me. With a simple and basic interface, this site isn't going to impress any computer programmers, but it is thought out, and effective. It includes a grading system to rate your our progress, and the program automatically adjusts the frequency with which you review a verse. It is a great way to keep up with past memory projects. Many Bible Bee contestants have used Memverse, and I am excited to get the word out to other potentials users. Do check it out and sign up!

Again, I would love to hear from you! What has God taught you through Scripture memory? Have you found any methods more useful than others? Wherever God has brought you, and whatever experiences you have had, they are not meant to stop! Keep up the good work if you are already memorizing, and if not, it is never too late to start!

"Thy word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against thee...." Psalm 119:11

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