Memorizing scripture is one of the key tools I want to pass down in my legacy.
Basically, if there were such a thing as a Scripture Memory Salesman, I want to be one. Because I have discovered that there is nothing more powerful in this entire universe that the word of God.
Because, y’all, Romans 12:2 is not just a nice thought.
“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
Our minds are renewed and our lives are transformed by the Word of God, but that is not an automatic process for every card-carrying, Bible believing Christian. We are wise to seek out the scriptures, and investigate his word like our lives depend on it – because they do!
Which is why our family decided to actively memorize some holy scriptures around this house.
Frankly, I started this project with the mindset that we would do one new verse every week. (But, hold your horses, because that turned out to be slightly overambitious.)
So we stretched the plan to start a new verse every other Sunday evening, so that every two weeks, Luke tucks another truth into his heart for instant recall when the need arises.
Not only are these verses hung up on the walls of his mind, they also hang on a wall in our home.
Luke’s enthusiasm over this project was semi-shocking to me. You know, because elementary age boys generally don’t care about home decor and such. But he gets excited when each new verse gets put on the wall, and (when he doesn’t know I’m looking) I’ve caught him intently reading the words in each frame.
Since this has been a fun, effective way to memorize scripture as a family, I just had to share it with you.
How does this work?
(1) Pick a Bible verse.
We start our new verse on Sunday evenings, except on Sundays that I forget. In which case we do the thing on Monday afternoons. We don’t have an official plan as to which verses we choose next, because we like to fly by the seat of our pants. (Although a quick Google search will drum up plenty of resources if a plan is your thing.)
(2) Write/Draw/Color your new verse on a 4×6 or 5×7 piece of card-stock, construction paper, plain old white printer paper.
Scientific studies prove that when you write things out – your memory muscle is activated to a greater degree than if you just read something. Which is why I suggest that each member of your family use crayons, colored pencils, and/or markers to create a visual of the week’s verse.
Lazy Parent Confession: at least a half dozen times, I created a colorful graphic for the verse on my own because we were in a hurry. (Or probably that was just my personal hurry.) Those just happen to be the verses that Luke wavers on during our weekly reviews. (Which totally proves those scientific studies I mentioned.)
The moral of this story: it’s okay to be lazy every now and again, but when you are, try to rehearse the verse a little more throughout the week so that it sticks.
(3) Talk with your child about what the verse means.
Do this while your kids write/color/draw out the verse. Incidentally, there’s science to back this one up, too. Stories and explanations make plain information more sticky so the brain can more easily retain it.
(4) Put your new verse into a picture frame.
We keep our current memory verse in a frame on the kitchen counter. When it’s time for a new verse, the old verse goes up on the Memory Verse Wall. (Hobby Lobby and Dollar Tree are my heroes when it comes to picture frames. I found some at Walmart for $2.00 once, but they fell apart and it stressed me out a little.)
(5) Weekly Review.
If you don’t use it, you really do lose it. (Just ask my former Spanish speaking skills and my oven.) We don’t have a formal routine for memory verse review; rather, I’ve found that tackling this on-the-go is awesome. We review our verses in the car, over breakfast, on the way out the door for school, as Luke’s getting ready for bed, etc.
Oh yeah, I left out Step 3b, which is basically “make sure you haphazardly hang the frames with no preconceived order.” Because hello, that’s evidently what the Dalke’s did.
Ironically enough, it’s pretty obvious that I’ve let
some a lot of OCD issues go for this project. Yet I cannot emphasize enough how much I don’t even care about the uneven spacing, the mismatched frames, or the off-kilter lines. Because we are literally surrounding ourselves with God’s word. And that’s the whole point.
“You shall therefore lay up these words of mine in your heart and in your soul…You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, that your days and the days of your children may be multiplied in the land that the Lord swore to your fathers to give them, as long as the heavens are above the earth.” (Deuteronomy 11:18-21)
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