Confession: I have not been faithful to memorize scripture on a regular basis. There have been times when I have done so but I didn't follow through and put in the time.
What? Memorize a whole book of the bible? Granted it is a short book but still...
If we memorize two verses a week I think we can be finished around December 17. But really...the whole book?
Confession: It has been easier than I thought (so far.)
In the past memorizing scripture consisted of taking one or two verses from a chapter and memorize...repeat over and over...and memorize. In my most recent past attempts I had been using the procedure where you state the reference, then the scripture and then the reference again. I could memorize the scripture but there was no connection to the whole thought of the passage.
Now that I am memorizing whole chapters and a book I find myself thinking: "I wonder what inflection Paul used when he spoke these words." "Why did he choose to use that word instead of something similar?" And after repeating them over and over I find the words speaking directly to me. I am enjoying having God speak to me through His word. I am even enjoying the process.
Here is why I am enjoying memorizing verses, chapter and book...it put the scriptures in context. I find myself getting the story. Yes it takes time but not as much as I thought. Here is how I am doing it.
- I write out what I am going to memorize on 3x5 cards.
- I started small, taking just two verses. This was the hardest part...
- Once the first two verses were memorized I add small chunks by doing phrases to phrases instead of scripture to scripture.
- When adding phrases I memorize them, then add the phrase before putting the new words into the 'big picture.'
- I always start from the beginning when reciting the verses, even if I struggle with the newest phrases.
- It usually only takes me two or three times reciting the whole group for the new phrase to become part of the 'big picture.'
- I am careful to make sure that the new phrases are secure before adding more.
- I only add two or three verses a week (phrase by phrase). If a verse is not a complete phrase I go on to add more so that there is a complete thought.
- Once the verses are added I repeat them often. I have set a pattern to do this in the car. In a short 10 minute car trip I can recite 20 verses three or four times.
The more I speak God's Word the more it becomes alive, and the more that the Holy Spirit brings it to the front of my memory in circumstances where I can use it.
Side note: memorizing long passages has been a blessing, it puts the verses in context with the others.
What has been your experience memorizing scripture?
What method do you use?