Scripture memorisation is something that has really been on my mind (and heart) lately. The link below is an amazing encouragement about why we should memorise scripture.
The first 16(ish) minutes alone are enough inspiration, John Piper quotes seven (yes, seven) passages of scripture totally from memory. And it’s awesome. He does follow it up with several points, but really the sixteen minutes was enough for me.
So, here’s to Memory Verse Monday. Some of the “handy hints” I’ve read on various other blogs say that it’s good to focus on one verse (or short passage) for a period of time, and trust God to use that verse to speak to you, which is what I have been doing, and will continue to do. I’m going to aim to memorise one verse per week – selecting the verse on Monday and each day in my quiet time I’ll spend time re-learning the scripture.
Why am I posting about this?
Well, another “top tip” of memorisation is “Discipline, Desire and Dedication”. While I have the desire, I struggle with the discipline and dedication: finding time to sit down and be with God has always been difficult for me, and I always seem to be able to find other things to do – things that seem really important at that very moment but can easily wait (for example, dusting the television or sorting through all the old receipts in my purse – yes, I am that kind of procrastinator!)
Introducing Memory Verse Monday is a way for me to be accountable, ensuring that I dedicate time to this spiritual goal, as well as maybe encouraging others to do the same and memorise scripture. Once I set my mind to something, usually it gets done…so here goes.
This weeks verse is from Jeremiah chapter 29 – verses 11 to 14a.
“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for good and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you, declares the LORD”
This is a short passage, but it’s always been one of my favourites. It’s bookmarked and highlighted in every Bible I’ve ever owned, and if you asked me to recite it, I’d have managed the first verse (11) but I’d never really considered the bits that follow. They’re truly amazing verses that speak of God’s purpose and love – and that is something I’ve let myself forget about recently, resulting in a bit of a low in my relationship with my Heavenly Father and feeling pretty down about just about everything (think, “what’s the point of…” and that’s where I’ve been lately).
Memorising these verses over the next week will help me to focus and remember that God is the most loving, perfect Father and he alone knows his purposes for my life – if I seek him, I’ll find him. (What joy!)
Practical tips to scripture memorisation…?
There is no set way to memorise scripture, or memorise anything! Whether it’s 2500 words of complex French for an A-level exam, or a recipe, or even how to calculate percentages – the best way I learn is to repeat, repeat, repeat! (yes, those are real examples, percentages are hard!)
The way I memorise scripture is by writing it out (always on scrap paper, I use an awful lot of paper for this!) several times, then covering it up and trying to write it out again word for word. It doesn’t matter if you get a word wrong the first time, or the first three or four times! Just make sure that you write it out again with the correct word and keep going; cover and repeat it, cover and repeat it.
The one most important thing to remember is that scripture memorisation is all about God; the Bible is his word to us memorising passages is a great way of getting deeper into relationship with him.