Memorize – the word strikes up thoughts of boredom, dusty old classrooms and often defeat. I am not the best at memorizing; I can barely remember what I went downstairs for most days, much less long lines of scripture word for word, as well as the chapter and verse number. But what are the benefits? Should I look at memorization in a different light when it comes to memorizing scripture?
When I’m in the car driving to my next destination for the day and my mind starts wandering to the million things I need to do by the end of the day, panic sets in, but then there’s this:
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4: 6-7)
Ok, I can breathe and give my worries to God, knowing He does not want me to live in constant stress mode.
What about our kids? When they are scared at night (and you just want them to go to bed!) or when they are on the playground and someone is being unkind to them. “Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid for the Lord your God will be with you.” Joshua 1:9 will remind them that God loves them, will protect them and they have nothing to fear. When your kids are arguing with each other or being disrespectful – “Love each other as I have loved you,” – John 15:12, is a good reminder to help them refocus their minds to think of loving the way Jesus loves us.
So, this is a great idea, but how do we make it really happen? Here are just a few thoughts for practically helping your kids to memorize scripture:
- Pick up the memory verse from your child’s sign in table at church and put it on the refrigerator, in your car, in their room beside their bed or somewhere they/you will see it often. Read it each time you see it or make it a goal to read it once a day with your child.
- Make it a song. If your child likes to sing put the verse to a tune.
- Make motions to go with the verse. Many children learn kinesthetically, so connecting motions with words will help them memorize! Our Bloom verses always have motions, so you don’t have to come up with them on your own!
- Make a book or picture. If children can associate a picture with the verse it will help them understand the meaning and memorize it.
- Use the verse practically. When your child runs into a situation where they can apply it. When you model this for them, they will begin to do it on their own.
- Celebrate in a small way once your child can repeat the verse back to you without help!
Watch Tom and Whitney’s daughter Sydney share a memory verse she learned: