"This is God's Word...Memorize It!!"

Already behind on my chicken-scratched "schedule" of blog posts on camp...and now ditching the schedule altogether and starting right smack in the middle...all because of this post by Ann Voskamp today...

Today's post by Ann is actually a repost...I'm not sure how I missed it the first time, but today it caught my eye due to her photos of stacks of little books...Scripture memory books...familiar little books from Bible Memory Association, a program that had a huge impact on my life and my family as I was growing up.  

I spent all last week thinking about those books, and how I needed to dig them out of their dark, dusty storage soon...book upon book of verses I learned throughout childhood and my young adult years.  I also have a few of my dad's books...the adult books pictured in Ann's post...while still more of those books, both my mom's and my dad's, sit in my mom's bookshelves.  I also thought about Heber and Steve McKissack and the tremendous impact they had on my life through the BMA program and the relationship that we developed through it.  

I thought of those books, and the verses contained in them, last week as we memorized and meditated upon and just all around dug into Colossians 3:1-17.  I thought about the many verses I'd learned through BMA over the years...the many verses the kids and I have learned more recently during our "Mega Memory" work in school...and wondered at how difficult memory work has become for me in recent years.  

I thought about how many verses I've forgotten over the years...and yet how many I still remember in the translation in which they were originally learned...many from the old faithful KJV, and many more from our translation of choice for many years, the NIV.  The kids and I have in more recent years begun memorizing from the ESV...unless it is something I remember too well from an older translation to teach/re-learn it in the new.  

Colossians 3: 1-2 say 

If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.  Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.  

Verse 10 says that we "have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its Creator."

And then verse 16 says

Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing songs and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.

I love the way that God brings things together to get His point across to us about certain things.  Before we left for camp I had been convicted that I needed to not only be more consistent in our family "Mega Memory" time during school (and when we aren't having school), but that I also need to make a priority out of personal Scripture memory.  Even when we were very consistent with our Mega Memory work as a family, I tended to be more the "coach" than a fellow memorizer.  I struggle these days with remembering what I had for breakfast, and I excused myself with the fact that brain fog brought on by physical issues makes memory work more than a challenge right now.

So...God had already begun to "prick" me about that before camp, and during camp He made it even more plain that this needs to be a priority in my life right now.  Here are some of my notes...(a mix from Lyndel's youth Heads Up! class and Andy's evening chapel sermons):

* Meditation is not only for insight, but for intimacy (with God).
* Re-memorizing is as good as review...enjoy it again!
* Koinonia is fellowship based on the Word.
* Seeking and setting our minds...Col. 3:1-2...we not only need to seek Him (actions), but we need to enjoy Him with our minds.  
* We are to use our minds to glorify God...THINK to glorify God. (We forget how awesome our brains are.)
* We need to stretch our brain muscles...through memorizing and meditating.
* "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength"...often we only use the other three, but not our brains/minds. 
* We are to think DEEPLY about Scripture.
* Col. 2:8 ~ If what we think doesn't match up with Scripture, then we need to throw what we think out!
* Deut. 6:4 ~ God is God. 
                     Love God with your whole being.
                     God's Word in your heart.
                     Teach it to your children diligently
                           -at home
                           -out and about
                           -when you lie down
                           -when you rise up 
                           (actually means "and every time in between")
                     God's Word is the curriculum for your life!
* Col. 3:16 ~ Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly.  What does richly mean?  With all your senses, deeply, greatly, extravagantly, elaborately, lavishly..."Go crazy with it!"
*"This is God's Word...Memorize it!!"

I've been pondering memorizing, with the children, a complete book of the Bible between now and the end of the year.  This week at camp, during our Colossians 3 study, I began to think perhaps we should memorize the book of Colossians.  Then I opened Ann V's post this morning, and she has a printable memory guide for the book of Colossians!   I think that sealed the decision.  Check back here for updates (and if I don't post any, send me an email and bug me about it! :))

Your words were found, and I ate them, and your words became to me a joy and the delight of my heart, for I am called by your name, O LORD, God of hosts. ~Jeremiah 15:16

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