Get Someone to Memorize With You
If I could give just one word of advice to any new memorizer, it would be to prepare for discouragement. As odd as this advice may sound at first, I believe one of the worst mistakes a Christian can make, and something I struggle with personally, is failing to prepare for spiritual battles before they are fought. Whether the temptation is to quit memorizing Scripture or something of a completely different nature, you stand little chance of success if you have failed to “prepare yourself to the battle” (1 Cor. 14:8) through prayer and Bible study, and by taking other practical steps that may be necessary to ensure victory. Regardless of how much you enjoy memorizing Scripture now, I can virtually guarantee that at some point along the way you will experience a temporary lack of motivation.
If so, don’t be alarmed; it happens to all of us periodically. You’ll take a brief break from your memory work during family vacation and suddenly realize it takes every ounce of commitment you have just to resume doing what came so naturally only a few days earlier. Based on my own experience, I don't think there is much you can do to avoid these occasional obstacles, but there are plenty of ways to overcome them – most notably, recruiting someone to memorize with you. I don’t think it would be appropriate to say you should have an accountability partner as you memorize, since this implies a one-sided relationship where you are merely reporting your progress to someone else and hoping for approval. Instead, find someone who shares your passion for Scripture memorization and ask that person to join you in committing a particular set of verses to memory, with an informal recitation to follow at the end of this process. If you can't think of someone who would consider partnering with you in this way, invest yourself wholeheartedly in getting a friend or family member to memorize for themselves. Being vocal about the importance of Scripture memorization is not just edifying to others, but it can even serve to keep you motivated personally as you are also reminding yourself of why memory work is worthwhile. Even if you're not as competitive as many have said that I am, there seems to be something in our human nature that resents the idea of coming in last place. Of course I don't think you can ever "lose" at Scripture memorization, but the spirit of friendly competition that often develops when you're memorizing with a friend seems to add a bit more fuel to the fire. After all, who wants to be the one who messes up his recitation or fails to finish memorizing on time? Memorizing with a friend is one of the more practical ways of implementing Hebrews 10:24, "Let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works." Determine today to be prepared when discouragement comes, and to do your best to make this a process that keeps others encouraged as well.
- Great motivation to use my voice to encourage others in hiding God's Word and to share the benefits associated with this blessed discipline. It sure would be nice to have someone close to me to share this with.
- Love this advice. It's much easier for me to continue memorizing when I know there are others memorizing alongside me. My online community on Facebook (HideHisWord) has kept me going through several chapters that we've memorized together. Will share this article with them there!
- Here in the bilingual Christian school the students memorize different portions, depending on their age. Even in the kindergarten month by month the children memorize at least one verse each month.
- Helen, Thank you for your comment. Where is your school located?
- Thanks for the thoughts Dakota. This has been a wonderful part of my life through the years. I memorized JAMES, MATTHEW and ROMANS 1-7 this way (with different friends) not to mention many shorter passages. Colossians 3:16 "Let the Word of Christ dwell in you (and me) richly...." Let's memorize together. Two great websites for memorizing with others are www.memverse.com and www.scripturetyper.com Come join us.
- Dakota, thanks for this insightful article. "As iron sharpens iron . . ." operates in the realm of memorizing Scripture as well.