It was Saturday morning, which once again meant pancakes and Psalm 92 for us around the breakfast table. “It is a good thing to give thanks to the Lord…”
One of the benefits of repetition is that, in addition to diving deeper and deeper into one portion of scripture each week, you also start memorizing God’s Word. Sometimes this even happens unknowingly. We experienced that this week when I happened to pause during the first few verses of our sabbath psalm– and then A. jumped right in and finished the phrase.
Then it became a test– could he complete the next verse? And the next?
Then it became a game– how much of the verse could he remember? Would he even need a prompt at all? By the end we were laughing as he recited (shouted is more like it) more and more of this psalm from memory.
A professor of mine once noted, “Start memorizing scripture and you can throw away all your commentaries.” I’ve found this to be true. The mini-miracle that hovers over just 2 or 3 words at a time as your brain is struggling to remember the flow of a phrase– amazing theology occurs in that space. I’m convinced the Holy Spirit moves powerfully whenever we begin memorizing passages of scripture.
This is because, to recite a passage from memory, we not only rely on the words ringing true in our brains, but we also need it to ring true in our hearts. Familiar passages that we’ve heard all our lives start to unfold, reveal newer depths, challenge our conclusions, and become new again. When we memorize scripture, we realize that the Word of God truly is living and active and sharper than any sword.
And so what a delightful surprise to realize that our sabbath morning routine of reading Psalm 92 together has borne additional fruit of our children making huge strides towards memorizing an entire psalm. I certainly wasn’t doing that at their ages!
The word of the Lord, thanks be to God, hallelujah, hallelujah!