So I have a little confession… I have totally bombed at my scripture memory challenge. And I don’t mean just bombed, I mean complete and utter failure (insert sad face).
My goal was to completely finish memorizing Ephesians 1 that I have been working on since last fall AND memorize one passage of scripture a month. As if that wasn’t enough, for some crazy reason I shared in my January newsletter that for February I would memorize ALL of 1 Corinthians 13, the “love” chapter.
Are you seeing a pattern here?
Hello, my name is Victoria and I like to set the bar so high for myself that I will completely fail.
I have been beating myself up over my failure but then recently, while I was folding clothing ironically, I was gently reminded of my one word and focus for this year.
I heard God whispering to me, “Are you seeking me to check things off the list or are you seeking me with your whole heart?”
It’s in my nature… I’m a doer, a list maker, I like to measure my productivity by checking things off my list. I even write things down on my list after I’ve done them so I can cross them off! And while I don’t think there is anything wrong with striving towards successful productivity, there is a fine line drawn when we approach our time with God as another item on our to-do list.
I am very guilty of spending time reading my Bible just so I can cross it off my list (those little check-marks on my YouVersion Bible app make me all sorts of happy!) I also think some people can go the other way claiming that they will only spend time with God when they feel lead as not to become too legalistic.
So how do we find the balance?
By simply seeking Him.
Sounds almost too simple right? But that’s the thing with God, He desires us to spend time with Him through reading the Word He provided, speaking to Him and listening to His voice. That’s it, it’s us who seem to make it more complicated than it really needs to be.
It’s my desire to live simply, intentional and inspired. I don’t want to live with complicated methods of doing different things, including my time to memorize Scripture.
So what does all this mean for me as I go forward now? Well for one thing it means that I remove the expectations I had for myself and re-evaluate that spiritual goal.
Yes, I will continue to place an emphasis on scripture memory because I do think it’s important, but I am going to free myself from the expectation that I need to memorize whole chapters of scripture (do you hear that sigh of relief?)
These past few weeks I have been captivated by the Olympics. I’m not much of a sports person, but for two weeks every two years I am a huge Olympic sport fan. I love the documentaries, the heartfelt stories of the athletes who overcame the odds and worked hard to achieve their success. Through watching them I had an ah-ha moment. It’s almost like a light went off.
Just like these athletes train, I need to start small, work on memorizing smaller chunks of Scripture successfully before I can move on to memorize an entire chapter or book. Those athletes trained for years, they didn’t just strap one a pair of skis on morning and say, “I think I’m going to race down this hill crazy fast!” No, they trained and worked. They started small, mastering the basics before they attempt the main hill.
So what’s my new plan?
Starting in March, next week, I will post a small memory verse (my new rule is that it can’t be more than 5 verses long) that I will work on memorizing for the entire month. Instead of trying to focus on memorizing an entire chapter and not really reflect on what it is saying, I’m going to spend 4 weeks mediating, reflecting, studying and memorizing a much smaller excerpt of scripture.
I will make a pretty printable that I will print off for myself (I’ll also share it with you too) and place it in a prominent place so that I can see it throughout my day.
I’ll also share practical ways on how I am learning to not only memorize the verses, but how to let them sink into my heart. After all memorizing scripture is more than just memorizing words, you are memorizing God’s Word.
I’ll invite you to share what your memorizing and why in the comments too as I hope that this will not only be accountability for me, but also for you too. I’ll hope you will join. I look forward to sharing my memory verse for March next week… stay tuned!