Archive | July 2018

An Unexpected Blessing Due to Memorizing Psalm 19



My husband suggested that I chose a shorter Psalm to memorize this week. Since I haven’t yet completely memorized Ps 19, I agreed with him. 

Even though I was still stumbling through parts of Psalm 19, I remembered the last verse, and that brought me an unexpected blessing.

In the middle of the night, a nightmare woke me up. Instead of panicking I wrote the following prayer, based on words from the Psalm.

You are my Rock and you’re my Redeemer
I will not cling to fears of tomorrow

No nightmare, sickness or terror attack
Can cause me to panic; you have my back

I’ve determined to please you in all that I do
With the help of your Spirit, I’ll follow through

You’re my Redeemer and Sheltering Rock
Of you I will write, of you I will talk.

I love Psalm 15. I’ve read it many times over the years and have always been challenged by it. It describes the kind of integrity and reputation that I desire to possess–the kind of life that pleases God.

I hope that you, too, will be inspired by it.


1Lord, who may dwell in your sacred tent?

Who may live on your holy mountain?

The one whose walk is blameless,
    who does what is righteous,
    who speaks the truth from their heart;

whose tongue utters no slander,
    who does no wrong to a neighbor,
    and casts no slur on others;

who despises a vile person
    but honors those who fear the Lord;
who keeps an oath even when it hurts,
    and does not change their mind;

who lends money to the poor without interest;
    who does not accept a bribe against the innocent.

6 Whoever does these things
    will never be shaken.

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This entry was posted on July 21, 2018. 6 Comments

Motivation for Memorizing Scripture



I’m wondering how those of you who accepted my challenge to memorize Scripture are doing with that task.

It took me longer to memorize Psalm 8 than it did for me to memorize Psalm 121. I’m not sure why. I had already memorized parts of Psalm 8. Maybe that was the problem. I choose to memorize Psalm 8 in a translation that was less familiar to me. The words of the older and more familiar text kept getting entangled in my mind with the words of the new translation.

This problem turned out for my benefit because I had to focus on the meaning of the words I was memorizing. I could not unthinkingly repeat them like a parrot. If we only want to improve our ability to remember, why choose Scripture? We could choose anything.

The Psalm that I picked for this week, gives us numerous reasons to memorize Scripture. I”m thankful that God chose to tell us what he is like through creation through Scripture. 

Dividing Psalm 19 into couplets so that all I need to do is memorize 2 verses every day does not seem as intimidating as looking at the entire psalm.


The heavens declare the glory of God;
the sky displays his handiwork.
Day after day it speaks out;
night after night it reveals his greatness.

There is no actual speech or word,
nor is its voice literally heard.
Yet its voice echoes throughout the earth;
its words carry to the distant horizon.
In the sky he has pitched a tent for the sun.

Like a bridegroom it emerges from its chamber;
like a strong man it enjoys running its course.
It emerges from the distant horizon,
and goes from one end of the sky to the other;
nothing can escape its heat.

The law of the Lord is perfect
and preserves one’s life.
The rules set down by the Lord are reliable
and impart wisdom to the inexperienced.
The Lord’s precepts are fair
and make one joyful.
The Lord’s commands are pure
and give insight for life.

The commands to fear the Lord  are right
and endure forever.
The judgments given by theLord are trustworthy
and absolutely just.
10 They are of greater value than gold,
than even a great amount of pure gold;
they bring greater delight than honey,
than even the sweetest honey from a honeycomb.

11 Yes, your servant finds moral guidance there;
those who obey them receive a rich reward.
12 Who can know all his errors?
Please do not punish me for sins I am unaware of.

13 Moreover, keep me from committing flagrant sins;
do not allow such sins to control me.
Then I will be blameless,
and innocent of blatant rebellion.
14 May my words and my thoughts
be acceptable in your sight,
Lord, my sheltering rock and my redeemer.

Psalm 19 (NET)

 

 

 

This entry was posted on July 14, 2018. 4 Comments

Singing Scripture



What a great time I had this week memorizing Psalm 121! One thing that works for me when I memorize something is to sing. So, during my early morning walks this past week, I sang Psalm 121. I did not have it all memorized on day one. Each day I added a few more lines to my song. Sometimes, I recorded my singing on my telephone. If I ever lose my phone and someone finds it, I hope that they listen to the Scripture songs that I’ve recorded.

If you’ve never tried it before, I hope that some of you will start singing the Psalms. After all, that is what they were written for. The word “psalm” means song. It doesn’t matter what our voices sound like. I don’t think that’s important to God. What’s important to him is the condition of our hearts. Let’s just be like children and not worry about what our voices sound like or whether or not we can carry a tune. 

(My husband gave me permission to use him as an example here. He said that he can’t carry a tune, but he can imitate. He imitates whatever singer he stands next to. That works for him most of the time. It’s a bit of a problem when he’s standing next to me and I’m singing a high soprano note. )

This week, I am going to memorize and hopefully come up with a new tune for Psalm 8. I’ve copied it below. I hope that you will join my summer challenge

It’s not too late! If singing helps you to memorize, do it. If it doesn’t interest you, try another technique. Come up with your own creative way of memorizing Scripture and, if you want to, share it!


Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!

You have set your glory
    in the heavens.
Through the praise of children and infants
    you have established a stronghold against your enemies,
    to silence the foe and the avenger.
When I consider your heavens,
    the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
    which you have set in place,
what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
    human beings that you care for them?

You have made them a little lower than the angels
    and crowned them with glory and honor.
You made them rulers over the works of your hands;
    you put everything under their feet:
all flocks and herds,
    and the animals of the wild,
the birds in the sky,
    and the fish in the sea,
    all that swim the paths of the seas.

Lord, our Lord,
    how majestic is your name in all the earth!

Psalm 8 (NIV)

This entry was posted on July 6, 2018. 4 Comments

Summer Plans



I’ve been thinking and praying about my direction for the summer and wondering what to do about my blog posts. I decided that it might be helpful for me to go back and read what I’ve previously written. 

As I reviewed some of the posts that I’ve written in the past couple of years, I discovered this one  and knew that, once again, I needed to heed my own advice. If you are feeling stressed and hurried, today, you might like to check it out.

 I’m planning to visit members of John’s family and my family and don’t want to be stressed and hurried while with them.  In order for this to happen (in addition to practicing the principles in the above-mentioned post), I am choosing to cut back some of my activities.

For example, my husband and I did not plant a large garden. We will purchase more of our veggies from the local farmers who grow wonderful crops and bring them, freshly picked, to the markets. 

An activity which I’ve decided I will return to is Scripture memorization. This practice reduces my stress level. As I shared during the worship service at New Hope Community Church this morning, the words of Scripture that I’ve memorized over the years have literally kept me alive.

In times of deep depression, failure, and disappointment, the Holy Spirit has faithfully brought back to my mind the word of comfort, encouragement, and wisdom that I’ve needed.

These are the words that bring joy to my heart and peace to my soul. These are the words that Jesus lived by. In referring to Scripture he said, “People do not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4 NLT). 

So, my plan is to memorize a portion of Scripture every week. I hope that you will join me. I’ve picked a short Psalm (usually 6-9 verses) for each week. 

Psalm 122 is the one that I’ve picked for this week. Though I’m familiar with and remember certain lines of this beautiful poem, I’ve not memorized it. I chose it because the Holy Spirit reminded me of this line as I was waking up: “the sun shall not strike you by day!”

That was exactly what I needed to hear on this hot morning. I was thinking of staying home from church so that I could stay cool in front of my air conditioner. The Holy Spirit has a sense of humor.

Below is the entire Psalm, as written in the New King James Version. Feel free, of course, to memorize it in another version.

I like that translation because at my age my soul needs a lot of preserving.  (See verses 7and 8.) Instead of the word preserve, other translations use the words protect or keep. The idea is that God is our personal security guard. A great thing to know when we are traveling!

Again, I hope you will join me in memorizing Scripture. I’d love for you to share what God is saying to you through it. Others, also, will be blessed by your words. 


I will lift up my eyes to the hills—

From whence comes my help?
My help comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.

He will not allow your foot to be moved;
He who keeps you will not slumber.

Behold, He who keeps Israel
Shall neither slumber nor sleep.

The Lord is your keeper;
The Lord is your shade at your right hand.

The sun shall not strike you by day,
Nor the moon by night.

The Lord shall preserve you from all evil;
He shall preserve your soul.

The Lord shall preserve your going out and your coming in
From this time forth, and even forevermore.

Psalm 121