Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Bible Study: Memorize

Memorizing Scripture may take a bit of time and effort, but it sets the Word of God into our hearts. Nearly all of us has known someone with Alzheimer's and seen the effects of memory loss. What stays the longest in a rebellious memory are the things experienced earliest and most often. A song sung frequently by a mother to her child will be kept in the person's memory longer than a one-time event or a memory from adulthood. The importance of Scripture memorization for me is to set the words of the Bible into that part of my memory where they will stay with me no matter what. If I lose my memory someday to Alzheimer's or am in a position due to torture or depression or any other circumstance where it's difficult to remember much of anything from my life as it is right now, I hope at least to remember portions of the Word of God.

In the meantime I find memorization extremely powerful in influencing my thoughts and emotions. If I am listening to a lot of Christian music, or actively memorizing Scripture, the words sink into my thoughts and repeat their messages over and over. I find my thoughts and reactions to the people around me are much more upbeat, positive, respectful, peaceful, merciful, and loving. I am happier and the people I live with are happier. If I read or listen too much to secular material, I notice the opposite is true. While I don't want to stick my head into the sand and ignore the reality of the world around me, I also don't want it to determine how I relate to other people. I continue to listen to the news on secular stations and read about what is really happening, but I also try to make the vast majority of the music I listen to be Christian and I actively work at memorizing Scripture.

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