Sunday, January 27, 2013

Storing the Word

A friend of mine says that when things are getting a bit off in her world, she asks herself whether she's been taking her vitamins and memorizing God's Word.  Those two things inevitably make the biggest difference in her overall health.

For so many years, I considered memorizing Scripture as "optional"--something I would do when things settled down in my life .  And interestingly, the fruit I was producing matched the amount of Scripture I had committed to memory:  none.

Then, my church set out to memorize Galatians.  Not just one or two verses.  Not even just a chapter.  THE WHOLE BOOK.  And because my small group was "all in," I, as the leader, decided to be "all in."  The accountability in Scripture memory paid off, just as it does when it's set up in other areas of life.  I can't say that all six chapters were committed to memory, but a lot more were committed to memory than if I hadn't tried at all. 

Two years ago, my family and I decided to memorize Psalm 91.  The benefits of that have been innumerable.  That one psalm has come to mind hundreds of times since committing it to memory, and I've been able to share portions of it with friends during times when they needed protection.  Having that psalm in my memory bank to draw on when I am fearful has been so powerful.

Yet, despite how powerful that Scripture memory was, during 2012, I didn't set out to memorize any new Scripture verses.  Unfortunately, the failure to set a goal meant that I settled back into status quo.

I resolved to change that this year.  I set out to memorize Psalm 34, and I'm already three verses in.  But I'm changing course.  Ann Voskamp has challenged her readers to memorize several chapters from Romans.  Initially, I thought, "That's not something I want to do; I've already chosen my single psalm to memorize, and that's what I want to do."  How very mature of me.  The real obstacle was that it sounded like a big chore, and I was playing the "lazy" card.

But now that a friend has jumped on board, I'm feeling peer pressure in the most positive way and have the accountability that I need.  Despite the fact that I'm almost four weeks behind, I'm going to try to play catch-up and tackle this big goal.  And much like the large project that I just finished up at work by doing a little every day, I need to focus on little chunks at a time and not on the fact that there are THREE CHAPTERS. 

So we'll see how the next forty-eight weeks go.  At the end of that time, I hope to say that I have stored more of God's Word in my heart.


Emily said...

Alyssa, thanks for sharing these thoughts with us. Last year I memorized Psalm 1 and Psalm 27 and like you said, the benefits have been innumerable. I am now working on Romans 8, and have begun to stagnate somewhat, so your words inspire me to get up and get going! Thank you!

michelle said...

I am doing this too! The Romans Project. Although i am already behind. The app (scripture typer) has really helped. Let's encourage each other with this.

Momma Bean said...

Just the inspiration I needed today. Going to check out the app Michelle mentioned as well

Lisa said...

I'm glad you're back---I've missed you! You never fail to bless me (or inspire me!)

Krista Sanders said...

That's awesome, Alyssa. I too have been challenged lately. It used to be a major part of my life- the memory part- and I've missed it. Yes, it's blessing me just as it is you. I will cheer you on!