5. Memorize a key verse - Psalm 119:11
Psalm 119:11 - I have hidden your word in my heart
that I might not sin against you.
Now I know what your thinking, "Preacher, I just can't memorize. My old brain can seem to hold on to information the way it did when I was younger.
Our society has changed. We used to put a strong emphasis on memorizing things at school, at work, and church. But not so much anymore. We assume the information will always be there so why memorize it?
I believe there are several good reasons for memorizing and "hiding" God's Word in our hearts. Let me count off a few quickly:
1. It may not always be available. We assume that the Bible will always be here. After all, it is the bestselling book of all times and is available in various translations and versions. But that may not be the case. In many countries it is a crime to own a Bible. And with Christianity becoming less tolerated and even persecuted it is possible that it could happen right here in America.
2. God's Word never comes back void. I remember a Vietnam POW talking about his experience. He talked about how the prisoners developed a code for communicating with each other. Even though it had been years since some of them had even stepped foot in the church they shared Bible verses that they had memorized. It gave them comfort and hope in trouble.
3. It's a good example to younger Christians. How can I ask my class to memorize a scripture verse that I am even unwilling to try to "hide" in my heart? The funny thing is that the kids actually get a kick out of trying to help you learn it!
4. It will help you in your defense of the Gospel. The apostle Peter told us to "Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have." I believe that it is important to have the word of God ready.
5. It will help you grow. It is amazing how often the Holy Spirit has brought scripture to mind to help me in situations. I remember when I was young I was about to go somewhere I shouldn't have even considered. Suddenly, "“Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go" (Joshua 1:7) popped into my head. Needless to say, I did not go.
6. It will help you to get more out of your daily reading. Memorizing and understanding a key passage will unlock the truths in the rest of the passage and help you apply it to your life.
Those are just six good reasons. There are so many more. I hope that you will decide to try memorizing the word. Challenge yourself and your friends in memorizing key verses. See how many you can memorize during the week. Keep a journal of your successes. Post your memory verse on your schedule so it pops up during the day to challenge you.
May God bless you as you "hide" his word in your heart. May you unlock the truth in your reading with this key verse.
PRAYER THOUGHT: Dear Lord, You have made the mind a wonderful thing. Help me to clear out the junk that I have stored there and fill it with your word. Use these passages to keep me from sinning. Help me to grow strong in your word. In Jesus' name, AMEN!