Grow in self-control. Understand the Bible more clearly. Be a better parent. Be a better spouse. Discern God’s will for my life. More effectively lead. Handle conflict more graciously. Pray confidently. Share the gospel clearly.
Don’t we all have a spiritual “wish I could” list? Perhaps it’s not written down. But at the very least, our mind conjures up ways we deem ourselves deficient every day. If we are honest, that list can get awfully long.
Some of us let it get us down. Others embrace the challenge. All followers of Christ experience it. In fact, acknowledgment of our need to grow is thoroughly Christian. Didn’t Peter say, “But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ…?” (II Peter 3:18, ESV)
So how do you make headway? There are thousands of books and programs outlining as many strategies to gain spiritual ground. Many of them are great! But is there a tool that might help you in any area of spiritual growth? I think there are a few, and one I’ll highlight below is Scripture memory.
Why might you want to hide God’s word in your heart?
Jesus did. Check the gospels. He often quoted the Old Testament.
The Apostles did. This becomes obvious when you read the sermons of Peter and Paul in Acts as well as their letters.
Great spiritual leaders do. I’ve never met a great man or woman of God who didn’t have Scripture, word for word, season their speech.
God expects it. In Psalm 1:2, it is said of a godly man that, “his delight is in the law of the Lord and on his law he meditates day and night.” (ESV)
It shapes your thinking. The memorized word will crowd out the onslaught of messages from the world.
To prepare for future spiritual battles. The Holy Spirit will bring to mind what we need when we need it if it’s there.
To align our heart to God’s will. Wondering what to do? Let the internalized word steer the course of your life.
As a way to deepen your prayers. You’ll find a greater connection to the Lord when you pray his words back to him.
Scripture memory isn’t the only discipline in which a believer should engage, but it’s surely a mighty one. What verse will you hide in your heart this week?