So last week we talked about Psalm 23 and how God wants to take care of us. So this week I want to continue that thought. We know God wants to take care of us, but how do we know what that entails? Well, of course all of God’s promises are in His Word, right? John 8:31-32 says we shall know the truth and the truth will set you free! When we know the truth in God’s word, we can use it to stand firm in our faith when things get tough. His word becomes a lamp to our feet a guide to us so we don’t get lost (Psalm 119:105). It keeps us from sin — Your word have I hidden in my heart that I might not sin against God (Psalm 119:11). We can believe God’s word and all the promises within it because not a single thing God promised has failed to come true (Joshua 21:45). And while that last verse applied specifically to Israel, I believe it’s true for all of God’s word because He’s the same yesterday today and forever (Hebrews 13:8) and God doesn’t change (Malachi 3:6). So if everything God says in His word is true, and God is still the same God, that means everything He did for anyone in the Bible He will do for us. He doesn’t play favorites (Romans 2:11, Acts 10:34).
Sometimes I like to think, no matter what I’m going through, there’s a verse for that! LOL Remember a while back they used to say, “there’s an app for that”? Well, truly, whatever you’re going through, there is a verse for that. There is nothing new under the sun (Ecclesiastes 1:9) and 1 Corinthians 10:13 says that “no temptation has overtaken you except what is common to man” — meaning what you’re going through now is not unique in the spectrum of situations mankind has faced. Someone else has already dealt with it, and more than that, I’d venture to say that it’s addressed in the Bible somewhere. And while the Bible may not specifically talk about modern technology, social media and the ilk, if you distill it down to the root issues, you’ll find them addressed in the Bible. For example with social media — what are some issues people have with it? Pride? Jealousy because they see someone else living this “perfect life” which may or may not be reality? Gossip? Slander? Idolatry? Idleness or spending too much time on it when we should be doing something else? Aren’t all these things mentioned in the Bible?
Sometimes we’re standing on God’s promises in faith, and holding tight to what His word says gets us through our situations because we know God will do what He says He will do in His word, and it builds our faith to stand on that scripture and see God move.
My point is that the Bible is our compass for navigating our daily life and absolutely ANY situation we find ourselves in. Which brings me to the point of today’s devotional. That we never know what is coming around the corner so we need to be prepared for anything — which is why we memorize scripture. So we’ll have these pieces of truth tucked away in our heart that always pop up in our memory just when we need it. It never fails the right scripture comes to mind at just the right time — or even when I’m trying to encourage or minister to someone a great verse will come to mind. But those verses won’t come to mind unless you spend time putting them there in the first place. Which is why spending time in God’s word is like the number one thing we need to do each day. We need to refresh ourselves because we are like leaky vessels. Almost immediately things of the world will come along and try to drain it out of you, or you pour it out into someone else through ministry or encouragement and before you know it, you’re empty again and it’s time for a refill.
So I’d like to encourage you this week to be intentional about spending time in the Word and memorizing scripture. Whatever that looks like to you. You could get a read through the Bible plan on youversion through the Bible app, or I’m sure there are a thousand printables online — and in fact, I have one I made for the church a while back which you can grab HERE (and it’s self-paced, so just mark off what you read as you go. Others you can find online will tell you what to read on each day). And if you’ve never started to memorize scripture, it’s not as hard as you think. Just write it down on an index card and take a few minutes each day to read over it. Then after a little while, try saying it without looking at it.
Here are some tips for scripture memory:
- Start small. Especially if you’re new to this, start with just one verse. Build up success, don’t try start out with 30 verses and get overwhelmed and quit altogether.
- Write the verse or verses out on index cards
- Punch a hole in the corner of your card and use binding rings to keep them all together. Flip through them a few times a day until you know them.
- Keep the cards in your purse to review during down times like waiting in lines, or at the doctors office
- Keep the cards in your car to review at a stoplight
- Stick the cards up around your house where you’ll see them a few times a day and each time you see the card, read it or say it out loud.
- Use a box system (like this one – click here)
- Write the verse out by hand several times until you can say it without looking
- Don’t forget to memorize the scripture reference/address so you know where it lives in the Bible (ex. John 3:16 is the reference for verse “For God so loved the world…”).
- Write down verses that are important to you
- Write down verses that stand out to you from your daily reading
- Write down verses that address the issues you’re currently going through.
- Use a topical index, concordance, or google to help you find verses that deal with that issue. Sometimes there will be a topical index in the back of your Bible, but not all Bibles have that. There are also lots of blogs out there that list verses on certain topics. And it’s a good idea to double check in your Bible that the verses you find online are correct — while you can google “verses about forgiveness” and find someone’s list, which is great, people write blog posts and people can make mistakes, so it’s always a good idea verify with a real Bible, or the Bible app, just to make sure. — hey, it’s always a good idea to fact check anyone quoting the Bible just to make sure what they’re saying is really true! (and they’re not trying to spin it a certain way or take it out of context) Feel free to fact check me too!
So for this week, feel free to journal through what was discussed above, but I’d encourage you to get some sort of scripture memory system in place — even one as simple as buying a pack of index cards from Walmart. It doesn’t have to be fancy, just has to be one you’ll use consistently. The aim is to help you get more Word into yourself so it will be there bubbling up just when you need it. If you have questions, want some help getting started, or just want to share your ideas, let’s talk about it on our facebook group! Or feel free to reach out to me directly. I’m always happy to help.