"I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you." - Psalm 119:11
I have not memorized one word of Scripture in a long time. Or rather, I had not. Recently I began to memorize a verse. I've started with one verse (2 Peter 1:9). I hope to know much of the Scripture in time.
Why now? Memorization has always been important in Christianity. Stephen used Old Testament Scripture to rebuke those Sanhedrin who ended up stoning him. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 reminds us that "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work."
If ever I am asked about a passage, I want to know where it is. I want to know what it says. If ever someone wants advice from me, I want to know where to lead them. If ever I get the opportunity to share the truth about God's love, mercy, and grace, I NEED to know the place(s) to look.
I also want my children to learn to love God's Word: to read it and follow it. James 1:22 reminds us to "not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says." Memorization alone will not make our childrens' paths straight, but it is a beginning. As a mama to boys I need to remember that "[they do] not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God" (Matthew 4:4).
Even if you have young children, they can learn to memorize Scripture. This week, I will be teaching my 3-year-old son his first Scripture verse (for memorization purposes): John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life."
This verse is honestly the only verse I remember along with the address (I have a few other verses memorized but no idea from which book they come). It's also the epitome of our faith. It can lead a person to the Lord, which is something I want to train my boys up to do.
As much as I want him to memorize Scripture so that the word can be a "lamp to [his] feet and a light for [his] path" (Psalm 119:105), I need to lead by example. I should keep the Word close to my heart in order to rebuke, teach, correct, and train - those are essential keys to being a mama. I strongly encourage you to begin or continue to carve God's Word into your brains and hearts so that you, too, can use it to raise your young ones to become children of God.