But there is power in the act of memorizing, of becoming familiar with a word, a phrase or a verse that comes to mind instantly when something happens to activate memory.
1. Choose a verse to memorize that speaks of something in your life right now.
A Bible verse that is relevant to what you are going through is easier to memorize than one that speaks of a topic that is abstract to you.
2. Start small.
Choose a short verse to begin with … and further reduce its size by splitting it into pieces. Memorize the first five words in the first verse, and when you have them down, add the next five words. As you gain greater confidence, you can add more words, phrases, and even entire verses, but do not add anything new until you have the words above
3. Write it down.
Write the verse you are memorizing on paper. But do not write it once; writing it many times-five or ten times is a good start (and some people write their verses from memory up to 50 times!). Physically writing the words is an extremely useful tactile memory aid.
4. Say it out loud.
Just as writing a verse can help you memorize it, so speaking the words out loud is a great way to burn them in your memory. One person suggested turning off the radio during your trip to work or school each day and recite your memory verse out loud instead!
5. Insert the verse in your sentences.
When you pray, include elements of the verse in your words to God. Pray that God will help you to understand and apply the verse to your life. Pray for the help of God to arrange the verse in your heart and mind.
6. Put it everywhere.
Write your memory verse in multiple tokens or sticky notes (combine this with # 3 above) and put them all over the place, so you can see the verse many times throughout your day. Tape the verse to your bathroom mirror or computer monitor. Tuck in your bag, lunch bag, car glove compartment, school textbook, pockets … anywhere you will see it. If it is possible to make the verse your computer desktop background and you can go further as you laminate the verse and hang it in the shower!
7. Use music to help.
Do you find it much easier to remember letters than spoken words? Try to establish the Bible verse in a simple melody (perhaps repurposing a song that you already know well) that you can sing yourself. (If this sounds like a strange suggestion, consider that many famous hymns and worship songs use verses from the Bible as their lyrics and were written specifically as aids to memorizing the Bible verse.)
8. Make a game.
Make the act of memorizing a personal challenge! You can write the verse in flashcards, leaving the keywords blank, and quiz yourself. Get some friends or family to help you try, or even memorize the verse with you and encourage / challenge you.
9. Repeat, repeat, repeat!
Whatever strategy you follow to memorize a Bible verse, do it repeatedly. Write them, speak out loud, sing it, pray, but whatever you do, do it again and again until it is a natural and reflective action. The goal is not to reduce it to a meaningless, repeated activity, but to slowly press the verse into your memory through repetition. Repeat your memorizing activity over the course of several hours, days, or even weeks for self-pacing. There is no reward for memorizing a quicker Bible verse; the point is to internalize it over time. And that means you should not be discouraged if it takes a while for the verse to “stick” – stay in it, and it will take root!
If you have never tried to memorize a Bible verse before, it is much easier than you think! Choose one or two of the above strategies and give them a try, adapting your strategy as you figure out what it does and it does not work for you. One thing is certain: you will never regret spending more time concentrating on the Word of God. And there is nothing as wonderful as an encouraging biblical verse
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