The last few summers, my girls have spent more time in God’s Word than during the school year. Our church has them memorizing verses year round, but during the summer I choose a plan. Two years ago, we focused on Colossians 3:12-14 and the virtues in them.
One night a week, we talked about how could we show compassion to others and the same with kindness, humility, gentleness, patience, forgiveness, and love.
It was convenient that there are seven virtues listed and seven days in a week! We made a poster to remind us. This was a great project and doing it in the summer meant more mental energy could go toward it.
Last year I decided to go the route of paying each of them $10 to learn 10 verses. We worked on each one for a week and reviewed older ones as we went.
The verses I chose were Deuteronomy 3:22, Ephesians 4:32, Hebrews 11:1 and 6, Proverbs 3:5-6, Philippians 4:13, Ephesians 4:29, Galatians 5:22, Jeremiah 29:13, 1 Peter 3:8-9, and Galatians 6:9.
My seven year old loved Deuteronomy 3:22: “Do not be afraid; The Lord your God Himself will fight for you.” She recited it often, especially when she was afraid.
These verses covered a wide range of topics and some they were already familiar with. Sure, you could call what we did bribery, but it worked. It got Bible verses in them when their brains were still sponges.
This year I decided to have them memorize a passage I learned a few years ago. It is ten verses!
Philippians 4:4-13 says: “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you. I rejoiced greatly in the Lord that at last you have renewed your concern for me. Indeed, you have been concerned, but you had no opportunity to show it. I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through Him who gives me strength.”
At dinner every night, we recite that week’s verse five times. When it is a passage like Philippians 4, we say that week’s verse and then add it on to the ones we have learned.
While summer is a time for relaxation and fun, it can be so much more. Let’s teach our kids the Word of God so that it never leaves them. Even if it is just a couple of verses over the break, it will change their lives.
What Bible verses are you helping your children to memorize? Do you have a Bible memorization plan for you and your kids? What is your favorite Bible verse?
Sarah Donegan is a wife, mom, and lover of Jesus. She grew up a tea drinker but switched to coffee once kids came along. Now that her girls are in school, she is embracing the plans God has for her instead of trying to force her own that just don’t fit right. When she isn’t singing or reading, she is probably writing. You can find her at her Blog and Facebook.
THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.