Effortless Scripture Memory

9:56 AM

Today I want to talk about something that I've been wanting to for awhile: how to memorize Scripture without even trying.  Now, to be honest, the work that goes into learning God's Word is such a joy that you might not be too excited about skipping it altogether, but there are things that you can do to help yourself learn even more Scripture than you're learning right now.  So here's a few things that I've done to help me learn Scripture...

One thing that you can do to help yourself and your family memorize easily is to post Scripture around the house.  While I was preparing for Nationals last year, I'd read a verse on the wall while I made my bed, then I'd read a verse on the mirror while I fixed my hair, and then I'd go downstairs and read a verse while I washed dishes.  Sometimes I would read these verses without even realizing it.  I have eight siblings, so sometimes there are quite a few dishes to wash! :)  While I washed dishes, I would read the passage above the sink many times, and I was able to memorize it without even trying to.  If you have a chalkboard in your house, you can write a verse on it (see the picture above).  Although this isn't cute or fancy or anything, we often put our verses cards in plastic zip-lock bags and tape it to mirrors, above the sink, shower walls, and really just any walls.

When my brother Thomas was in his first year of Bible Bee, he thought that he couldn't memorize.  Well, one afternoon, I was just sitting there studying Jonah and singing a Scripture song of Psalm 86:1-8 without even realizing that I was singing it.  Thomas had only memorized a few of the shorter passages at the time, but all of a sudden, he started singing Psalm 86:1-8 with me.  When I realized it, I stopped singing and asked him to recite it for me.  Even though he hadn't really worked on memorizing it, he recited it with almost no mistakes.  By listening to Scripture songs, he was able to memorize an eight-verse passage without even trying!  You can find lots of Scripture songs on the internet.

Similar to the last tip, listening to audio Bibles is very helpful.  You can listen to them while you cleanup the kitchen, exercise, or do math (math is the only subject that I can really do while listening to something, but you might be different).  I love Faith Comes By Hearing, a drama audio Bible that I listen to in the English Standard Version.  It is also available in the King James Version.  One thing that I've noticed is that audio Bibles help a lot with long-term memory.  When you hear a passage recited many times by the same person, in the same tone, and with the same background music, it really sticks in your head!

One thing that I love to do is make my screensaver a Bible verse.  This is especially helpful if I have trouble with a certain reference.  If I put it as my screensaver, it will stand out in my memory because it will have something especially unique about it.  You can go to picmonkey.com, click on the "design" button, choose a canvas color and play around with a background until you like it.  Then you can type the verse onto it (click the "Tt").  Save it to your computer and make it your screensaver.  Every time that you log on to the computer, you'll see that verse, and you'll be able to memorize/review it without trying.  Above  is a screensaver that I made last fall for Nationals.

This may sound weird, but you can actually use passwords to help you remember passages.  Having a whole verse might be a little impractical because it would be easier to mistype the verse and it would take too long (unless it was something like "Jesus wept"), but some people like to have the first letter of each word in a verse as their password.  You could also do a phrase from a verse that you have trouble with.  I've actually never done that before, but it's just something that popped into my head as I was typing this.

Use sticky notes on the computer.  Honestly, I don't know much about computers, so don't ask me anything about how to use this or how to get it on your computer.  The picture above is my screensaver right now.  Hopefully, you can see the sticky notes with the verses on them, and I also clicked on the "Start" button so that you could see where the sticky notes are on this computer.  Using these sticky notes is similar to making my screensaver a picture of the Bible verse, but sometimes, I want to have verses and pictures.  You can probably tell from my current screensaver that I wasn't content with just one picture, either.  After a few months of constantly switching my screensaver to different pictures with Bible Bee friends, I just decided to make a big collage of some of my Bible Bee photos.  I still accidentally left out a few.  Oh well! :)

One way to encourage others and also help yourself learn verses is to share Scripture with others.  Oftentimes, I put a verse at the end of letters and letter-like emails.  This could be a verse that has been especially encouraging to you, or that the Lord has been using in your life a lot, but it could also be a verse that you think the person you are writing to might be encouraged by.  "Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing." (1 Thessalonians 5:11)

There is one more thing that you can do to make memorizing easier.  However, this one does take time and commitment, but it is well worth it.  Read your Bible every day.  If you read Scripture frequently, you'll naturally be more familiar with it, and the passages will come more easily.  You'll also have a better understanding of what you memorize because you will have read the passage in it's context.  This is crucial; don't skip daily Bible reading.

I'd love to hear what y'all do to make memorizing easier.  I'm always on the lookout for tips! :)

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Don't forget to enter the giveaway of The $100,000 Word!  The giveaway ends on Friday at 11:59 PM.  Also, please note that you must comment on that post in order to enter the giveaway; sharing it on social media, memorizing verses, etc. are just additional entries.    

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  1. Thanks for all the tips, Anna! Isn't it amazing how many ways you can memorize Scripture without even trying too hard? ~Kaitlyn R.

  2. I love these tips! I love the idea of posting Scripture around the house. And also the tip on sharing Scripture with others. :)

  3. These are all really good tips. I would agree about the listening aspect of it--I have listened to a great deal of verse recitations (helping to check for accuracy) without consciously trying to memorize, and it is fun later on when someone starts a passage, and I can actually carry it further, just because I heard it so many times. So the listener benefits, too.

    Last year I worked on memorizing Isaiah 52:13-53:12. I took small cards (like a 2 x 3 size) and made an illustration for each verse with pictures and symbols. I attached them together with a ring and practiced with them. It was a fun opposite-brain challenge and another way to learn scripture.

    Mrs. K McConkey

    1. That's a wonderful idea! I added it to my Word document of study/memorization ideas for this year's Bible Bee :).


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