I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.
My parents enrolled me in a Scripture memory program at a very young age: three years old.
I remember the very first memory book that was used for preschoolers. Each letter of the alphabet coincided with a verse:
A: "All we like sheep have gone astray."
B: "Be ye kind one to another …"
C: "Cast all your cares upon him for he careth for you."
D: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."
And so on. …
My mother worked the most with me in helping me to memorize the allotted verses, and then I would recite them to a "hearer" at my church each week. A "hearer" was a neutral-party person, and in my case it was a fellow church member who happened to be the mother of one of my good friends. She was very kind and when necessary, gently corrected me or prodded me along as I would recite my memory verses to her.
As I got older (grade school, junior high and onward), I began to resent having to memorize Bible verses. It was just another "chore" in my weekly doings, another task to cross off the list. I also memorized Scripture at church: in Sunday School classes, in Pioneer Girls club, in "big church" and later on in the high school youth group and in other Bible studies.
They were just words to me during those years. I knew it was good that I was memorizing from the Word, but it just didn't mean a whole lot to me then. Seeds were being planted, but nothing was growing in my heart. Everything lay dormant.
Many, many years later, something began to happen. After living life my way, after numerous mistakes and poor life choices, I finally gave up and gave in to God.
"Lord, I know you can redeem the years I have wasted. Please invade my heart. Take over. Make something good out of the mess I've made."
And he did. Slowly but surely I began searching the Scriptures (hungrily and with desperation this time) to help me apply Truth to my life. And the verses I had memorized came back to me! The treasure that had been stored years ago had not been snatched away. It was still there, hidden in my heart. And it was growing! Perhaps I couldn't recall all of the references, but I knew the words. And I still do to this day.
Friends, God's Word is powerful. It is so worth your time. And it is our lifeline here on earth. If you want to see real and radical change in your life, if you're looking for hope in a hopeless world, if you desire to know who God is and if you want to share this Good News with someone else, then get in the Word and start hiding it in your heart.
I promise you this: as you draw closer to God in this way, he will draw closer to you. And you will never be the same.
As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it (isaiah 55:10-11).
Intersecting Faith & Life:
It is never too late to start hiding God's Word in your heart. Begin with one verse a week. Write it on a sticky note and place it on the bathroom mirror in your house or the rearview mirror in your car. Speak it out loud, consider its meaning and ask the Lord to help you apply it to your life.