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The Power of Memorizing Scripture

By committing Bible verses to memory, God's Word becomes alive in our hearts.

By Susanna Foth Aughtmon, Redwood City, California

As appeared in

I keep your word close, in my heart, so that I won’t sin against you.  Psalm 119:11 (The Daily Life Bible)

I have a vivid memory of perching on a metal chair on a hot July night during vacation Bible school, chanting, “Without faith it is impossible to please God. Hebrews 11:1.” I got a sticker for my memorization skills.

At the time, I had no idea I was tucking away Scripture for further use. I was just really into stickers. But I have found through the years that Scriptures I memorized in my early years have come back to me during times of prayer or stress or in line at the grocery store.

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Scriptures like, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. Proverbs 3:5–6,” and of course, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life, John 3:16.”

We loved the King James Version back in the day. But the King’s English aside, the truths of these verses have shaped me. They have marinated all these long years in the corners of my memory, and they remind me on a regular basis of who Jesus is and Who He created me to be.

“Thou shalt not covet” pops into my head every time I pick up a decorating magazine. “Be ye kind one to another” surfaces each time my boys start swinging at each other. “Shout to the Lord all the earth” comes to my mind as I sit in church surrounded by the praises of His kids.

Sometimes I forget that Scripture is alive. That its words are transformative and powerful. I think it might be time to learn some new verses. Even if I don’t get a sticker.

Faith step: Pick a favorite Scripture and put it up on your fridge. Each time you see it, say it out loud. Once you have memorized it, put up a new one.