Post by Pastor Tim – During the month of December, the DOTW Discipleship Family takes time to reflect on how the Lord has worked in our lives and how we have responded to that working. I wanted to reflect on one of the tools that has benefited my family.
Memorizing Scripture – Every week during 2013, our family memorized anywhere from 2-15 verses of Scripture. This has been one of the most “life-transforming” activities our family has undertaken this past year. My kids didn’t have much difficulty memorizing the larger portions of Scripture, but I would often struggle. Then, I came across a blog post by Pastor Teddy Ray and learned his unique approach to memorizing Scripture. In order to memorize, Pastor Ray took a passage of Scripture and wrote down the first letter of every word.
In order to do this, you take a verse (or verses) of Scripture, such as John 13:6. It says,
“He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?” Then write down the first letter of each word. For John 13:6 you would write,
Make sure you also write down all punctuation and capitals. And instead of trying to memorize by looking at the words, you are now trying to memorize by looking at the initials.
At first I didn’t understand the benefit that this would bring, but I found that it made my memorizing much quicker. Pastor Ray even said,
Someone shared something that changed my whole approach to Scripture memory. They had me take a larger chunk – a full passage rather than single verse – and turn it into initials. I worked on a few verses at a time until I could say the full passage using only the initials as my guide. Then from there, I began to discard the initials and work on full memory.
For some reason, that intermediate step of working from initials made a huge difference. I think it also helped to begin looking at Scripture memory in terms of whole passages rather than single verses. The memorization served a deeper purpose, too, as it opened up the depth of these passages to me in whole new ways. It also helped me to see I could work through pretty large chunks, amounts I didn’t think were possible to memorize.
If you are technologically minded there are online flash cards at Anki Software, but it is just as easy to make hard-copy flashcards – that’s what our family has done!
Have you used any unique techniques to help you memorize Scripture?