When I first started running (what I really mean is jogging at a pace that you could probably walk next to me), my head was filled with negativity. I asked Kyle what he thinks about while running, and he pretty much just thinks about running. I told him about my ugly self thoughts and he gently put his hand on my shoulder, and with tenderness and compassion spoke truth to me. "Mom, you have to stop doing that. You can do this!" He was so right, so I focused on new thought-life exercises while I exercised my body. I prayed for everything I could think of. I thanked God for every single thing that came to mind. And my favorite, I started reviewing every verse I could remember that I've ever memorized. Guess what? My negative self-chastisement no longer plagues me while I'm running. I can run free in my mind.
Psalm 121 and Psalm 139 have been mediated on and quoted in my mind and heart over and over and over since my running journey began. I've had both passages memorized since college, but this fall, God showed me new and powerful truths in each passage. Once again God has used scripture memory in my life to bring about transformation, and I am humbled and grateful.
This past Sunday, my wonderful, intelligent, bible-loving, pastor, husband stuck it to me through his message. The title grabbed me immediately: Longing and Expecting to Not Be the Same. He used verse after verse to remind me how much I need and want transformation of ideas and images I hold that are lie-based or culturally-based and not founded on the truth of Christ. Through the message I was once again challenged to press into the Word of God through reading, listening, studying, meditating, and memorizing.
Therefore, I decided to start up the scripture memory accountability we shared on this blog a couple of years ago. This is going to be so good for us! Each month on the first, I will post some sort of blog about scripture memory, what I'm learning, suggested verses to memorize...anything that comes to my random mind. Then every month on the first or the few days following, you will leave a comment with the one or two verses you are memorizing for the month. Make sense?
You should set a goal for how many verses you want to learn each month. I would suggest with starting with two verses per month for the first two to three months. If you find it's too easy, then maybe decide to learn one per week. When I was in college I memorized a verse a day, and retained them by reviewing them regularly. You can do this. Please don't tell me you can't or I get all Jillian Michaels on you and start encouraging/yelling at you that YES YOU CAN AND I DON'T WANT TO EVER HEAR THE WORDS "I CAN'T" AGAIN! But if you're too tender for a Jillian experience, I will just hold your hand and tell you that you absolutely can because God wants to transform your heart and mind so he will enable you to do this.
If you would like more information on the process of how this will work, please go to this blog post that I wrote in January of 2011. It will be helpful. If you have questions, leave them in the comments or send me a personal message. I am absolutely wanting to help you grow and become more like Christ. One thing I know for sure is I'm passionate about mentoring and this is a very practical way to mentor many of you at the same time.
One last thing, for the next few months I will be working on memorizing one of my life passages. It is funny that I've never committed this to memory, so it is time for me to stop making excuses and make it happen. For January I will work on 2 Timothy 3:1-2.
2 Timothy 3:1-2
But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy
Such an encouraging passage to start 2015 with, don't you think? Whoa.
Ok, here we go! I can't overstate it. I'm excited to do this with you! Please comment with what you are memorizing and any other lovely things you would like to say. And don't forget to let me know if you need help. Helping is my favorite.
Blessings to each of you as we start brand spanking new year!