Well friends, there is much to share this time, but I’ll try to be brief. I was blessed to pieces to be able to travel to Houston on January 20 for Beth Moore’s Siesta Scripture Memory Celebration. I met Siestas (Beth’s code name for sisters from her blog community) from all over the country who spent 2011 committing God’s word to their hearts. I can’t even begin to describe how it felt to be in a room full of 1,000 plus women who were brimming with the Holy Spirit, gained at least in part through the discipline of scripture memory. If you ever had any doubts about whether memorizing scripture was for you, please read some of their testimonies here, on Beth’s blog.
If that doesn’t convince you, perhaps Ann Voskamp will. She wrote a blog this week about her scripture memory goal this year. You can read what she has to say by clicking here.
And last but not least, for now, what about John Piper’s two cents? He makes a convincing case here for the importance of memorizing scripture.
I will tell you that many years ago I made a new year’s resolution to read my Bible daily. After a few years of making that a resolution, I realized it wasn’t really a resolution anymore, it was a habit, it had become a discipline. Same thing with daily prayer, there was a time when that needed to be a resolution for me. Now it’s a habit, a discipline. I am not trying to toot my own horn here, I’m just saying that after a while of doing something that is really good for you, that has a good impact, and that bears fruit, that thing can become a habit rather than a chore or item to put on a list. And your affection for it can grow. Memorizing scripture has become that way for me. I can’t even imagine not memorizing the Word. It has blessed me to my core and borne fruit in such a way that I almost crave it. I can’t urge you strongly enough to put aside any thoughts that you can’t, and just do it. You can! And you won’t regret it!
My verses for February 1, 2011 were I Thessalonians 5:16-18:
16 Be joyful always; 17 pray continually; 18 give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
These verses came to me through my daughter. By this time last year, the kids were well aware that I was memorizing verses. I had insisted that we all repeat I Corinthians 13:4-8, substituting our own names for “love” until they all had it memorized themselves. Emma’s Sunday school lesson had been on these verses from Thessalonians, and she thought they would make good memory verses for me. She was right!
A few days later, I was reading Francis Chan’s book about the Holy Spirit, “Forgotten God,” and he mentioned I Thessalonians 5:19,
19 Do not quench the Spirit.
Well, I don’t believe in coincidence, so I felt that the Lord was prompting me to add another verse to my short passage, and I tacked this on. I have seen these verses pop up everywhere this year. At the SSMTC, all 3 of the women in my group who recited our verses to each other had chosen this passage (although I was called an overachiever for tacking on v. 19). And if I recall correctly, verse 18 pretty much sums up Ann Voskamp’s life-altering book, “1000 Gifts.” If you are thinking of memorizing scripture but aren’t sure where to start, this passage is a great place! You can even break the verses up and do them one at a time.
This year I am memorizing Jesus’s Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 5, 6 & 7. I have only just begun, but I can’t express how these words are affecting me. My prayer is that they will truly affect how I live and love those around me. My verses for this time are Matt 5: 8-12:
8 Blessed are the pure in heart,
for they will see God.
9 Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they will be called sons of God.
10 Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
11 “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
I’d love for you to join me in learning more about this world-changing sermon here.
Now it’s your turn! Please post your verses in the comments below, and if you memorized last year, please share your last year’s verses and any ways that you were impacted by memorizing scripture. Also, if you have any helpful tips for others who are taking on the challenge this year, I’m sure that would be much appreciated! Additionally, Beth’s ministry hosts a celebration every other year, so I hope that all of you will consider traveling to Houston in January 2014 for a time of unbelievable blessing, Lord willing! Meanwhile, perhaps we can come up with our own way to celebrate this year’s memory efforts together in January 2013. I’m open to suggestions!
Thank you for coming, and the Lord bless you and keep you, dear ones!