Update: Tears sprang to my eyes, as I couldn't contain my excitement about God's ways! Messaged a sister-friend last night who I know has been working on memorizing the book of James. Asked how it was going and shared my decision to memorize Ephesians. Asked if we could be memorization buddies--because I need some encouragement over here! She had gotten bogged down after chapter one and quit, but guess what?! She wanted to jump back on the train! As iron sharpens iron! So excited to be on this journey together!!!!
Sister-friends, I just wanted to tell you...
I am on verse 14!!! Woo-hoo!!!!
Now, I realize what that means: I am 10 verses shy of being on track to finish the book of Ephesians by year's end. And, you know what? For about a week, I almost let that get me down. So down that I nearly gave up. My internal dialogue sounded something like this: "I can't meet my goal now; so, why try? I give up. Why did I ever think I could do this in the first place?"
But God. That's all I can say. God showed me that even if I fall short of my goal of the entire book of Ephesians, I am hiding some WORD in my heart! Even if I only get half-way to my goal, that's three chapters of God's Holy Word. In. my. heart.
I have said before that I want my girls to know God's Word like the back of their hands. That, if the hard copies of Scriptures are ever torn away from their sweet little fingers, they can recite the Words like lyrics to their favorite song. The Word dwelling. Living in them--richly! Alive in them, keeping them alive.
And I've heard, and since learned, that what you want your kids to be and be about, you better be and be about. If I want them to take Scripture memory seriously, then I better take it seriously. It is our lifeline! If we're not holding onto that, what on earth are we holding onto? I've got to show them it is the one thing that is worth investing their time and energy in!
I admit this is harder than maybe anything I've ever tried to do. It is taking far more time and energy and discipline than I initially thought. I am walking around reciting the first 8, 10, 12, and now 14 verses of Ephesians all the freaking time! And I still stumble on all the "in accordance with" phrases, or switching words around here and there--"We were chosen in Him" instead of "In Him we were chosen." But...I have two options:
(1) Stumble around a bit, taking a few steps (verses) forward only to realize the next morning that I have to take a few of those steps all over again today (because only a few words actually stuck from yesterday), or...
(2) Quit moving forward.
Lord willing, I'll keep stumbling forward. Oh, please, won't you join me? It is hard and fun, exhausting and energizing, frustrating and more rewarding than anything I've ever done in my life. And I'm just 14 verses in!
You still have time to do a few chapters this year.
And, one last thing, please don't tell me, "I just don't feel particularly led to do that right now."
There are some things we have to feel led to do. Like moving cities, changing jobs, adopting a child...
And there are some things we are commanded to do because God knows it is best for us. Parents tell us, "Eat your veggies; don't fill up on sweets," because they know the sweets won't help us. God tells us, "Devour My Word; don't fill up on the things of this world," because He knows we are hungry and He knows He is the only thing that can satisfy.
(Of course, it doesn't have to be Ephesians! Or any book for that matter, but just any Scripture verses you choose. And it could be one a week, or one every two weeks, or...you know what you can do. But this I would suggest...push yourself! And even if you fall short of what you hope for, you still do more than you thought possible!)
"Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things..."
"Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly..."
"Thy word have I hidden in my heart that I might not sin against you..."
"Do not let this book of the law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful."
And, please don't think you can't do this! He would never tell us to do anything that is impossible for us.
"I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength."
Jump on, sister! This train is moving. And you don't want to miss this ride!!!