My Grace-Full Life

5.23.18 Praise & Prayer Prompt: Biblical Book Smarts & Biblical Street Smarts

PRAISE & PRAYER PROMPT ••• Psalm 119:11 says, “I have hidden your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.”
But Friends, I have always been terrible at memorizing.
Growing up, I went to a private, Christian school and took Bible classes as part of the curriculum.
Each week, we had Bible verses to memorize.
My GPA failed miserably under those assignments.
The only verses I ever successfully memorized were

  • John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
  • John 11:35: “Jesus wept.”

I wish I could say I finally mastered Bible verse memorization by the time I graduated high school, but… no, I didn’t.
Then, I entered my prodigal years…
I knew the basics of the Bible but didn’t have the familiarity with Scripture that would convict my heart.
I certainly didn’t have God’s word hidden in my heart.
When I finally returned to God, reading the Bible was as intimidating and daunting as it had been in my high school days.
But most people, even those without a steady stream of faith in their lives, learn a few life lessons that make the knowledge of their 30s and 40s very different from the knowledge of their teen years.
So with the wisdom of age and life experience, I kept plugging at it with the faith that it would eventually click.
I still stink at memorizing and I’m in awe at those who can.
But I finally figured something out.
When the psalmist said, “I have hidden your word in my heart,” it’s not about memorizing.
It’s about the message.
I don’t try to memorize anymore.
Memorizing doesn’t equate to a relationship with Christ and it doesn’t build a stronger faith.
It’s like the difference between book smarts and street smarts.
Memorizing is great if that’s your talent!
I am so amazed by that skill!
That’s the book smarts.
But you’ve got to know more than the words.
You need the street smarts that come when the message takes root in your heart.
The only two verses I have memorized are still John 3:16 and John 11:35.
But I have a ton of messages in my heart.
I may not be able to tell you off the top of my head where the verse is located, but with the help of Google, I can find the verse reference every time.
Today, as you pray, thank God for His beautiful Word that gives daily guidance and eternal hope.
Ask the Holy Spirit to help you have the “holy street smarts” that you can tuck Biblical messages and truths in your heart for any situation.

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