When I was in 4th grade, I won Best Speller of the year. If a human resource manager would interview me for a job and ask me what the greatest accomplishment in my life is, I’d probably say, “Becoming the Best Speller when I was in 4th grade.”
I wasn’t one of the top students in class but my English teacher picked me for the spelling competition anyway. I was nervous. I’d never entered an academic competition before. The competition droned on and scores were tight. I ended it when I spelled ‘kayak’ correctly and won one point ahead of the rest. I walked out of the school library a bit shaking. Did I just win? I could not believe it. I returned to my room and my classmates asked what happened in the competition. Someone asked if I won. I nodded and everyone cheered.
They asked if I’ve memorized the dictionary. No, I didn’t. I just happened to read ‘kayak’ a few days back and looked it up in the dictionary.
Ten years later, people still ask if I memorize the dictionary. No, I don’t. I still commit spelling errors at times with the most common words. While I don’t memorize the dictionary, I do read it occasionally. It wasn’t because I wanted to win that I won. I just wanted to be a good speller.
Well, what does this post got to do with memorizing verses? Oh well, I just thought that it runs the same way when we memorize verses. Most Christians brought up in church, if not all, were brought up memorizing verses so we can have special rewards. While that may be an effective motivation to memorize, it isn’t giving the reward that our spirit craves.
I’ve noticed recently too, that many Christians who’ve read Do Hard Things have included “Memorizing Verses” in their list of Hard Things. It is good that memorizing verses have captured them because of Do Hard Things but it isn’t good to memorize just for the sake of doing something hard.
I’ve memorized a lot of verses but it isn’t because I want to accomplish a hard thing. I just want to know Jesus more.