From the Pastor
Pastor Mike Burns
903.567.2072 (Ext. 3002)
spoken with dozens of people about scripture memorization and they have all
said the same thing: “I have a terrible memory.” My answer to them is
“nonsense!” Everyone memorizes all the time. You’ve learned to speak, haven’t you?
You’ve memorized thousands of do’s and don’ts in life, right? You know your
social security number, your phone number, your address, how many brothers,
sisters, and children you have, how to get to work and what to do when you get
there? The problem is not that people
can’t memorize, it’s that they won’t memorize.
The Bible is
the foundation of witnessing and you must memorize verses to be able to use it.
This applies to your devotional life as well as your witnessing life. You
will be amazed how the Lord uses what you have memorized. Here are some tips that will help you
1. Choose a verse to memorize that
speaks to something in your life right now.
verse that’s relevant to what you’re going through is easier to memorize than
one that speaks to a topic that’s abstract to you.
2. Start small.
short verse to start with… and make it even shorter by breaking it down into
pieces. Memorize the first five words in the verse first, and when you’ve got
them down, add the next five. As you become more confident, you can add more
words, sentences, and even entire verses—but don’t add anything new until
you’ve got the previous words down pat.
3. Write it down.
majority of Bible Gateway fans suggested this simple strategy: write the verse
you’re memorizing down on paper. But don’t just write it once; write it many
times—five or ten times is a good start (and some people write out their memory
verses up to 50 times!). Physically writing the words out is an extremely
useful tactile memory aid.
4. Say it out loud.
writing a verse out can help in memorizing it, so speaking the words aloud is
an excellent way to burn them into your memory. One person suggested turning
the radio off during your commute to work or school each day and reciting your
memory verse out loud instead!
5. Incorporate the verse into your
pray, include elements of the verse in your words to God. Pray that God will
help you understand and apply the verse to your life. Pray for God’s help in
fixing the verse in your heart and mind.
6. Put it everywhere.
suggest writing your memory verse out on multiple index cards or sticky notes
(combine this with tip #3 above!) and putting them all over the place, so that
you’ll see the verse many times throughout your day. Tape the verse to your
bathroom mirror or computer monitor. Tuck it into your purse, lunch sack, car
glove compartment, school textbook, pockets… anywhere you’ll see it. One person
suggested making the verse your computer desktop background, and another goes
so far as to laminate the verse and hang it in the shower!
7. Use music to help.
Do you find
it much easier to remember lyrics than spoken words? Try setting the Bible
verse to a simple tune (perhaps repurposing a song you already know well) that
you can sing to yourself. (If this sounds like a strange suggestion, consider
that many famous hymns and worship songs use Bible verses as their lyrics, and
were written specifically as aids for Bible verse memorization.)
8. Make it a game.
Turn the act
of memorizing into a personal challenge! You might write the verse out on
flashcards, leaving key words blank, and quiz yourself. Get some friends or
family members to help quiz you, or even to memorize the verse along with you
and encourage/challenge you.
9. Repeat, repeat, repeat!
strategy you follow in memorizing a Bible verse, do it repeatedly. Write it
down, speak it out loud, sing it out, pray it—but whatever you do, do it over
and over until it’s a natural, reflexive action. The goal isn’t to reduce it to
a mindless, repeated activity, but to slowly press the verse into your memory
through repetition. Repeat your memorization activity over the course of
several hours, days, or even weeks to pace yourself—there’s no prize for
memorizing a Bible verse fastest; the point is to internalize it over time. And
that means you shouldn’t be discouraged if it takes a while for the verse to
“stick”—keep at it, and it will take root!
Published on Monday, March 24, 2014 @ 9:47 AM CDT