Memorizing Scripture – Tips and Benefits

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I’ve heard lot of excuses for not memorizing scripture.

  • It is just too hard.
  • I’m not good at memorizing.
  • Why should I memorize it, when I can look it up?

These are adult excuses, by the way. I think for the most part, children have an easier time memorizing than adults do.

But it’s never too late to start memorizing scripture!

We do a lot of memorizing as a family. The kids also memorize additional verses for church.

My tips for starting to memorize scripture as a family:

  • Set small goals at first.
  • Recite the verses together.
  • Don’t forget to review often.
  • Link verses together. This can be done by memorizing large sections of scripture or by picking verses that follow a theme (like an acrostic for example.)
  • Don’t try to add more verses until you’ve mastered what you’re already working on.

We started out memorizing 26 verses. Each verse begins with a different letter of the alphabet. We started on this project 8 years ago! We finished learning all the verses years ago, but our nightly recitation always has several of the Alphabet verses included.

Benefits of memorizing scripture:

The most important, obvious benefit of scripture memorizing is “hiding God’s Word in our hearts”. It is easier to mediate on, and the Lord can bring a verse to mind more readily if we know the verse.

Aside from that spiritual benefit, it is good exercise for the brain. I’ve found that the more we memorize, the easier it is for us to memorize.

Another way that I’ve found the verses I’ve memorized to help me is when I wake up in the middle of the night. Most of the time when I wake up and can’t get back to sleep, it’s because I’m worried. After I catch myself stewing over something, I pray. But, I’ve found that in those wee hours, prayer tends to bring me right back to the worry because I start to rehash the problem again. What I do if I find myself back in that worry cycle is start reciting verses (in my head of course!). That’s why it is helpful to have verses tied together. I start with our “A verse” and continue through the alphabet. If I’m really worried, it may take me several times through the alphabet before I return to sleep. Having the verses linked like that helps me avoid spending any time thinking about what verse I ought to recite next. (Because pausing tends to make me lose focus and go back to worrying.)

Does your family memorize scripture together? Do you have any advice to share?

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9 thoughts on “Memorizing Scripture – Tips and Benefits”

  1. Yep, we memorize scripture verse and hymns as a family. We simply recite or sing them daily. This week we’re working on a new hymn called “Come Follow Me” and I printed the first verse in little foot prints (a few words per foot). The kids put them in order and taped them up on the mantle so we can sing and see the prints. Lots of fun!

    We try to regularly recite all the verses we’ve learned too. I like the scripture memory box idea from Simply Charlotte Mason but have not put one together for the family yet…. one of these days…

  2. This is a wonderful post. Thank you for the encouragement. I need to plan to add this back into our days as we have been remiss in this area as of late. Thank you!


  3. No we don’t memorize as a family, though I’ve thought of starting it before. But I’m just trying to get myself in a routine of memorizing scripture. I’m very bad at it.


  4. I have been keeping the fridge totally cleaned off except for putting a scripture on it–I know the older kids (who are in and out of there all the time) are memorizing these:) BUT, I have not been doing it as a family with the older ones. I need to change that up…

    Kristen, I actually stopped by to tell you I am reading the well trained mind and signed Emma up for CC, cycle 2 this year. It is a different approach, but I think the style suits her. Maybe you can give me some tips on starting out with this approach. Meanwhile, I’ll go read your article again:)

  5. Oh, Kristen, I wish I had lists from 2001! But at least I’ll have them from 2010. 🙂

    We memorize Bible verses regularly, just by reading them aloud once or twice a day. I don’t learn as quickly as the children, but then I’ve had many more years of reading the Bible. My big problem is that our church uses the NIV translation, and for 30 years I used the RSV, so I know them all ‘wrong’ compared to the kids.

    Annie Kate

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