The Beauty (& Benefits) of Memorizing Scripture

The Beauty and Benefits of Memorizing Scripture

Time and time again, I've attempted to memorize big chunks of scripture, only to fail. Sure, I have lots of scripture committed to memory. But not whole books. The boys have to memorize weekly Bible verses as part of their curriculum at school, so I always thought this would be a good motivator. It never was.

Recently, my online gal pal Kim Cash Tate (a gifted Christian book author by the way) shared a video about her tips for memorizing scripture. That video re-ignited the flame. And it's funny how something as simple as spiral bound index cards helped me tremendously!

A few weeks back I started memorizing the book of Ephesians. I'm still early in the book, but I'm okay with the progress thus far. I've discovered that giving myself a deadline to memorize verses was stressful and counterproductive. Instead, I move on to the next set of verses once I feel I've gotten a good understanding of the verses. I don't just want to memorize for memorization sake. I want to have a clear and deep understanding of what I'm memorizing. I'm finding that this method is helping those verses to stick!

Benefits I'm discovering:

  • Revelation comes from pondering the same scripture over and over. I've read Ephesians numerous times, but with more reading comes a deeper revelation of the verses.
  • Verses pop up in my heart just when I need them. Verses that seem insignificant take on great importance when the Holy Spirit brings them back at just the right moment.  
  • I can spot errors.  Reading verses over and over in context can help you spot when it's pulled out of context or when it's misinterpreted.
  • You can teach it to your kids.  What I know for sure, I can surely pass on to the kids. Instead of looking it up, I have it right in my head (and heart!)
scripture index cards

The System That's Working for Me:

  • Spiral bound index cards: I write down two verses per card and carry it around with me. I prop it up while I'm getting ready in the morning, on the nightstand and on my desk at work. Since I'm a visual learner, seeing it constantly works best for me.
  • I also like to listen to the audio version. YouVersion (the app and web version) has audio versions of various translations. I like to listen and say the verses along with the narrator. I'm currently memorizing the ESV translation but am considering switching to KJV since I've discovered that a lot of verses that I already know are in this translation. 
  • I'm also loving the BibleMinded app for the times when I just have my phone but not my index cards. It provides virtual memory cards with verses as well as fill-in-the blank "quizzes" and I can test my memory by typing the verses out.
bibleminded app

Do you memorize scripture? If so, I'd love to hear your tips as to how you do it!