[I hope you all had a wonderful, family and friend-filled Thanksgiving. Though we should be thankful 365 days of the year, I do appreciate gathering together for the specific purpose of thanksgiving.]

If my title attracted you, maybe you’re a lot like me. I have always claimed to have an awful memory. Most times, I lived up to this claim! I’m sure many people in my life would gladly share stories with you of my forgetfulness. I’ve accepted this as “who I am” and have willingly used it as an excuse. 
Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right
You’ve heard that one before, but isn’t it true? If you actually take time to study the human brain, we are capable of SO much more than we are currently doing. I’ve learned about this, but it’s so much easier to apply to someone else’s life…certainly not my own!

I mentioned the James Bible study a few weeks ago. In this study, Beth Moore gave 5 levels/challenges for the study. The fifth and most difficult was to memorize the book of James. As she said this, the rapid beat of my heart and the prompting of the Holy Spirit convinced me I needed to do this. You see, two-ish years ago, Duncan and I committed to memorizing the book of James. Let’s just say…we started. We’ve attempted a few more times. But I think I allowed myself to let it slide because of my “bad memory.”

But sometimes, you just get a little fire in you and decide that enough is enough. It’s time to take on the challenge!

Here’s James Chapter 1:

So bare with me...it's definitely not perfect!

Beth Moore has a strategy for memorizing that I tried to follow. She uses an acronym with the word “abide.” AH! I was a little giddy when I saw this part of the challenge, too. If you have “favorite words” like I do, you’ll understand what I mean.

“Abide” resonates deeply with me. I think of John 15. I think of remaining with Christ and walking with Him through whatever life may bring. I think of the Holy Spirit whispering this word to me time and time again. I just love this word. Abide.

…And what better word for memorizing scripture than this one? It’s perfect. 

So here it is: 
A = Ask. Ask God for the ability to memorize and to have His living Word in us. He wants to give it to us. When we memorize, the mind is captive to Christ.
B – Believe. Believe you can do it! In the captivated mind we find a power we never knew was possible. God’s Word is set up for memory work.
I – Increase. Increase the portion you are memorizing each week. When memorizing chapters, you must treat them differently than verses. She recommends printing out one chapter at a time and laminating it. Set goals that work for you. Don’t leave it open-ended, and be willing to extend the goal if you need to. Plan on one chapter per month, several verses per week. The first week you will memorize several verses, then the next week you will review the previous verses while memorizing a few more.
D – Determine. Determine to set a time every day to practice. Practicing requires discipline. She practices while exercising, setting her page in front of her on the treadmill.
E – Enjoy it! Even if you don’t get every single word, the Word is accomplishing something in you. The Word sets us free when our thoughts get caught in the muck.

To you with the bad memory, I hope you find this encouraging. You can change!! Praise God for that!

11/26/2012 23:28:07

Ahhh....I, too, love the word 'Abide' and now I love it even more that it has become a wonderful acronym for memorizing God's Word.But what is even more special about that acronym is that I realize I did exactly what 'Abide' stands for when I began seriously memorizing verses and chapters over 10 years ago. When I first began, it was frustrating for this 'old' mind to memorize, but God answered my cry for help and it definitely becomes easier and oh so rewarding. But, all this to say, thank you for the challenge of continuing to memorize James. I put it on the back shelf for awhile, but I am determined to bring it down from the shelf and complete what I began. Blessings on you and Duncan as you continue to hide God's Word in your hearts! Love you.


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