“Faith is the substance of things hoped for – the evidence of things unseen.” I was talking to a friend last week, and she was trying to explain this verse in relation to our topic of the moment. She couldn’t quite pull the words up from the back roads of her mind, and I was shocked when it came out of my mouth. Why would I be shocked, you wonder? Because, I’ve never knowingly set out to memorize this verse. I guess I’ve just heard it and seen it enough times to have memorized it. Sadly, the only reason I can tell you it’s from Hebrews 11:1 is because I’ve since looked it up. I always find it funny that the verses that I know by heart always seem to be from the King James Version. I haven’t read the KJV in 25 years!
I love how the Lord allows me to pull up bible verses from the recesses of my brain when I need them. Imagine how many more I could pull up if I actually made a plan to memorize some verses. I’ve heard stories of people held prisoner and not being allowed to have a bible, but the verses that they had memorized through the years got them through their challenging time.
So why don’t I have more verses memorized? I’ve always thought it would be prudent to have some verses at the ready. I’ve even been convicted by Psalm 119:11: “I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.”
The truth is, I haven’t tried very hard to memorize scripture because it’s hard and I’m not good at it. Lame excuse, I know. Whenever my grandson declares he can’t do something because “it’s hard,” I look at him and say, “You know what? You can do hard things.” It’s possible that he and I have the same issue—we don’t want to do it if we can’t do it perfectly.
Last week I met a 93-year-old woman who came with her son to our church small group. She was one of those women whom I wish I could spend hours with, just learning from her years of wisdom. At least three times during our discussion she quoted a bible verse from memory. I finally looked at her and said, “Do you have the WHOLE Bible memorized?” She claimed she didn’t, but I wouldn’t be surprised if she really did, right down to the “who begat whom.”
Maybe it’s time I start trying again. My 93-year-old friend suggested I start by picking a verse from my daily reading time, writing it out, and posting it in 5 or 6 places throughout my house, in my car, and any other place I would see it frequently. That might work—if I follow through and actually do it. I also downloaded the“Scripture Typer” app to my phone last year. It’s a great program, I’m told, but I might need a little help with the directions. Nothing comes with directions anymore!
Do you have a scripture memory plan that works for you? If so, would you help a girl (or an old lady, as the case may be) out and share your memory plan with me? I think I’ll start with this one:
Psalm 119:114: “You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in your word.”
I know it’s short, but I thought it best to set myself up for success for my dive back into memorization. Want to join me?
Nancy loves to laugh and considers laughter a critical part of human survival. If you were to ask, most days she would say her glass is half full but when it starts reaching the half-empty level, she reaches for a funny book or movie knowing that indeed “A cheerful heart is good medicine.” Nancy has three married sons and five grandchildren. To read more from Nancy find her at www.nancyholte.com.
Nancy, I appreciate your honesty as always from acknowledging the writer’s block to struggling to do things if they can’t be done with perfection. I’m going to think on this and pray about joining you (& starting small).
Thank you, Kate! Try the Scripture Typer App. It’s pretty cool.