Friday, October 2, 2015

Memorizing Psalm 139: The 31 Day Challenge

Early this summer, I felt like God was pressing on my heart to memorize Psalm 139.  The whole thing.  All 24 verses.  I have memorized Scripture before, but never as large of a section as that.  It kind-of intimidated me...and I put it off.  I was well-meaning, but just hadn't gotten it done.

For most of the summer I struggled with anxiety and insecurities in a way that I hadn't experienced before.  I have to wonder if I would have struggled in the same ways or as much had I memorized this Psalm the first time I thought of it.

Now I have got it in my head.  Here is how I did it.

1). Be accountable.  For me, that meant telling my kids it was something I was trying to do.  When I say something out loud, it makes it real for me.  Speaking my goal usually makes the difference to get out of my head and get started.

2). Find a visible place to hang what you want to memorize.  I hung mine in the laundry room by the dryer.  I feel like I spend half my life there folding clothes so I will see it frequently.

3). Write one verse a day on your paper.  I just happen to like colored pens; they bring me joy.  I have color-coded mine to be a different color each day.  It also makes it easy for me to discriminate from one day to the next.

4). Recite, rehearse, and repeat.  All the time that I spend in the laundry room, I am studying my sheet.  I focus on the part I just added, making sure I can say it without peeking.

5). Throughout the day as I go about my other tasks, I will try to say everything I have learned to that point.  

It is not a perfect system, but one that works pretty well for me.  I love being able to draw on Scripture hidden in my heart, even when I don't have my actual Bible in front of me.  It comforts me, and I love being able to draw on that wisdom throughout the day.

Question for you:  How do you memorize Scripture?  What strategies do you use?

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