As a faith-based community, we at Bethesda Senior Living Communities love to see our residents grow in their walk with God. And we know memorization is a powerful tool that seniors can use to help them further their knowledge of Scripture.
The Bible teaches in 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NLT) that: All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.
This means when Christians take the time and effort needed to memorize Scripture, they gain the ability to draw upon its comfort and guidance instantly, regardless of whether they have access to a Bible at that moment or not.
The benefits don't end there, however. Read on for four more reasons to memorize Scripture.
This is what the LORD says: “Don’t let the wise boast in their wisdom, or the powerful boast in their power, or the rich boast in their riches. But those who wish to boast should boast in this alone: that they truly know me and understand that I am the LORD who demonstrates unfailing love and who brings justice and righteousness to the earth, and that I delight in these things. I, the LORD, have spoken!" Jeremiah 9:23-24 (NLT)
Jesus says in John 10:10 that knowing him allows believers to hear and recognize His voice like a sheep following its shepherd. By memorizing Scripture, seniors spend a lot of time pouring over passages and reflecting on their meaning.
This practice can help seniors increase their understanding of God's character and His many promises to His children. Knowing God on a personal level lets seniors see firsthand who He is and what He desires, which makes it easier to recognize His guidance in their daily lives.
Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. Ephesians 4:14 (NLT)
Believers have faced doubt and lies since the beginning of time, as shown in Genesis 3:1 when the serpent first asked Eve, "Did God really say...?"
The best counter to uncertainty is truth, and by committing God's promises to memory, seniors can quickly respond to doubts so that they can enjoy the peace promised to all believers through Jesus (Acts 10:36).
Paul encouraged the early church to practice this when he urged them to take every thought captive (2 Corinthians 10:5) and to renew their minds so that they would know God's will (Romans 12:2).
One of the most important commands Christ has given His followers is to share their faith with others. Often the best opportunities to talk about Jesus comes up in conversations unexpectedly for many individuals, such as during a phone call with a loved one or a meal in their senior living community's dining hall.
Knowing Scripture by heart lets seniors respond immediately during these chances, instead of potentially missing the moment by not having access to their Bible.
Memorizing Scripture can also help a senior demonstrate how important their faith is to them. This sincerity can potentially encourage individuals who may not normally engage in religious conversations to listen.
Using Scripture in prayer is a great way for believers to overcome stress during trials and hardships. It also naturally encourages seniors to keep their focus on God as they go about their daily routines in their assisted living apartments.
To get started, try simply using a single verse or two to create a prayer to start your day. The Psalms are a popular choice because many of them are prayers by King David. Other verses you might want to try include:
• Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning. I say to myself, “The LORD is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in him!” Lamentations 3:23 (NLT)
• For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. Matthew 7:8 (NLT)
• Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. Proverbs 3:5-6 (NLT)
There are many ways seniors can get started memorizing the Bible if the practice is new to them, including singing songs that have verses as their lyrics and writing passages from start to finish multiple times. Whichever method seniors choose, memorizing Scriptures is one of the best ways to deepen your faith and spend one-on-one time with God.