I remember memorizing Bible verses and catechism passages for confirmation. I hated it. It seemed like such a waste of time. Before confirmation days, we memorized Bible verses for Sunday school. In my early twenties, I continued memorizing scripture. I printed the passages on recipe cards and took them with me to work, to school, wherever I went. When I had a moment, I took them out and worked on them. I am surprised how many of those verses stuck.
Memorization has fallen out of favour of late. Yet, I continue to have my confirmation classes memorize. The books of the Bible, for starters-one should at least know the lay of the land. Important Bible verses, such as John 3:16, important snippets from Luther’s Small Catechism, such as his explanation to the third article, and the Lord’s Prayer and Apostles’ Creed. Why? Partly in response to God’s command to the people, “Put my words in your heart.”
I am always amazed how those with dementia can remember words to hymns, biblical passages, and the Lord’s Prayer. These words have taken root, and I am convinced give grounding and comfort when much else is lost. What a treasure.
Help me, Lord, put your word in my heart. Amen. — DAB