“Mom, I promise it helps!”
My mom smiled and sighed as she left my room. I was hanging off my bed, upside down, as I studied my AWANA verses for the week. (I swear it did help…all that increased blood flow to the brain, right?)
Twenty (!!!) years have passed since those AWANA days, but those weekly challenges laid a solid foundation for memorizing God’s word. Throughout elementary and middle school, I continued to sock away verses, but sadly I didn’t continue the habit throughout high school and college. I’d memorize a verse here or there, but I realized the majority of my verse stockpile were old verses, with hardly any new verses. And why is that? I know at least for me social media consumption tricks me into thinking I have less time from such ventures.
The source escapes me at the moment, but I read a great post last summer focusing on how we spend our time. Essentially, we get nothing back from mindless browsing on social media. Yes, there are positive uses for media, and I believe it’s here to stay, but I can assess and adjust my own attitudes toward it.
According to a 2016 article in the New York Times, the average American spends almost an hour a day on Facebook. When looking at social media consumption and web browsing as a whole, those daily figures can range from two to four hours a day, with higher totals for teens and tweens.
I’d look up from a fruitless crawl on Facebook, and then realize I hadn’t memorized a new verse all year. That just doesn’t add up. If I can check Twitter and Snapchat multiple times a day, then I can surely work in memorizing new verses in place of checking those apps. Right? Right.
So I headed into 2017 with my adult version of an AWANA challenge.
Starting on January 1, I started memorizing Psalm 119, one verse a day. Right now, my goal is to memorize six verses a week, so it will take me about 30 weeks to memorize (hopefully) the entire chapter. So far it’s going well, but you know, I’m only eight verses in. Check back in with me in a month!
I’m using these tools to help me out.
Scripture Typer app (Lite)
If you and your family want to join me in a renewed effort to store up God’s word, I’d love that! If you want to join me specifically in the Psalm 119 challenge, visit the group I launched on Scripture Typer.
If you want to forge your own path, I created this free PDF of different verses to help get you started.
The next few posts in the series will cover memorizing scripture with kids, and other tips to help us adults in our memory quest. You can do more than you think. No matter what age or experience you have with memorization, you got more in you. If you can belt out Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing” or Miley Cyrus’ “Party in the USA,” with no hesitation, you can sock away a few verses.
Come join me!