In the last blog post we discussed the importance of memorizing scripture and highlighted three main points: victory over sin, daily sustenance & conformity to Christ. If you are reading this and have a desire for all of the above (+more), then learning to memorize scripture will be an invaluable discipline!
There are many well known ministries such as The Navigators & Fighter Verses which have created incredible systems for memorizing Scripture. They are worth taking a look at if you are ready to take memorization even more seriously. With that in mind, the tips we share are nothing new but rather what we have found to be the most helpful.
Before jumping in here is a piece of advice we recently came across that will be crucial as you practice memorizing Scripture: Identify one or two distractions that can be sacrificed in order to make way for the quietness and concentration memorization requires. Fast from those things, at least for a time, for the sake of your memorization. Whether it’s Netflix at night or scrolling over your lunch break, name the distraction, fast from it & replace it with memorizing your current verse.
Remember the 15:90 rule: 15 minutes every day adds up to 90 hours per year. Just imagine what 90 hours of Scripture memorization would do in your walk with the Lord!
Here are 5 practical ways to memorize Scripture:
Pick a time each day and stick to it
Setting aside a time each day to practice will be paramount. Just like we attend sports practice or choir rehearsal, having a dedicated “practice time” for memorizing Scripture will help you stay on track. If you’re just beginning, start small. 5 minutes of practice per day is better than no practice at all.
Write it down
There’s a term called “generation effect” which states that individuals demonstrate better memory for material they’ve generated themselves than for material they’ve merely read. Writing the verse down gives you a leg-up when it comes to recalling it later. Write own the verse, the part of Scripture & the date.
10 times read 10 times said
Read the verse ten times. Take your time as you read it and don’t rush through it. After you have read it 10 times, close your bible and try to say it out loud ten times. Work through saying it aloud until you don’t need to look down at the text for help. The purpose here is to get to a point where you are recalling the verse not merely repeating it.
Do it together
Accountability is a huge component of growth with just about everything and it is no different here. Find a willing partner - spouse, friend, mentor - and commit to working through the same verses together. Every week practice saying your verse(s) out loud to each other.
Review is essential to learning. It’s important to review your current verse several times throughout the day - outside of your practice time. If you carry your verse on a Liveworthy card, you can easily keep it in your pocket or wallet for those idle times throughout the day. Someone said the secret to making memorization last a lifetime is to, “Review a verse daily for seven weeks, once-a-week for seven months, then once a month for seven months and you will remember it for life.” We all have different capacities of memory so for some this will be overkill while for others it won’t be enough. Determine which works best for you and stick to it!
As with starting anything new, learning to memorize Scripture may seem challenging at first. Consistency is key. On average it takes around 66 days for a behavior to become automatic.
With God’s help, may we all become better stewards of His Word and the time He has given us!