This past week, I practiced a discipline that reminded me of my elementary school days of memorizing chunks of Scripture. However, this week was probably my first time memorizing Scripture not for a homework assignment or a Bible quiz competition. Instead of my motivation being external, it was internal – truly wanting to tuck God’s Word in my heart so I might access it at my weakest moments of discouragement and temptation.
Here’s Adele Calhoun’s take on “Memorization”:
“Desire: to carry the life-shaping words of God in me at all times and in all places
Definition: Memorization is the process of continually remembering the words, truths and images God uses to shape us. Memorization provides us with a store of learning, which can be accessed anywhere and anytime.
- memorizing Scriptures, hymns, poems, quotes, etc.
- rereading portions of Scripture until they are committed to memory
- memorizing Scripture verses that clearly reveal God’s plan of salvation
- memorizing the books of the Bible, particular dates and times as well as where various verses are found
- learning by heart portions of Scripture that encourage you when you are tempted”
So, for the week, I decided to memorize three passages – each to help me remember something particularly important about God and about who I am in Him:
“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” – Hebrews 4:15-16
“But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us spreads and makes evident everywhere the sweet fragrance of the knowledge of Him.” – 2 Corinthians 2:14
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” – John 14:27
I practiced these verses when I woke up in the morning and before I went to bed each night, reading them, then closing my eyes to repeat each verse again. Throughout the week, my devotional time was very much formed by declaring the words of these verses, inviting me to remember that Christ draws me to appreciate his divinity and his humanity, that I can approach him with a surety in his presence. I can remember that Christ leads me into triumph over what entangles me, giving me the gift of sharing his love with others. And I can remember that Christ’s peace is the only lasting peace; I can so easily try to seek for peace in many other places, but I know my heart’s true home is in the peace that he provides.