This month, our meditation has been excerpted from the book entitled, Bound to Be Free compiled by Jan Pit. In the following short quotation from the heart of Yang Zhang (from China. A fiery evangelist from China writing under a pseudonym for his protection), there is fodder for reflection and perhaps application:
To lay up God's words in our hearts takes time. It means that we have to read God's Word so many times that it becomes part of us.
Some people have the Bible, but they never read it. They have laid up God's Word on a bookshelf.
But we must lay it up in our hearts. Nobody can take that away from us. Wherever we are, we have it with us. In freedom--and in prison.
That is why we in China, read God's Word as many times as we can. We feel already privileged to have a copy of the Bible.
But we also know that the Bible can be taken away from us any time--or that we may be sent to places where we cannot take a Bible along.
That's why we memorize as much as we can. One of the best known Christians was Rev. John Sung. He once said: 'When I was young I was locked up in a mental hospital for 190 days. I was so glad that I could keep my Bible and I read it many times through during those six months.'
When he came out of the mental hospital his doctors expected that his spirit had been broken. But he came out a stronger Christian than ever before. None of the doctors understood--but we did!
A moment of introspection: If there is any similarity between Christians in today's world, it may rest on our common or shared belief in God, and in His Son, Jesus Christ. For each of us, God's Word--His Holy Bible--played an important part in our coming to such belief. We know the power inherent in God's Word--a power that gives new life, provides endurance, grants wisdom and growth in spiritual stature, instills love for our heavenly Father, and serves as our handbook for living in belief. But Brother Zhang asks if we have discovered a deeper dimension of the Living Word, the Holy Bible. Mr. Zhang says that this deeper dimension makes the difference between not understanding the empowerment and girding up of faith, and failure to understand why an imprisoned Christian's spirit had not been broken through his incarceration.
What is this deeper dimension? Some would call it burying God's truth deep within our heart. Some would describe it as immersing our soul in the living God, always having Truth at hand, and knowing and applying that truth in our daily Christian walk. Others would term it "laying up God's Word in our hearts." Yet still other Christians might claim it is boring, or too hard, perhaps "I'm too old to memorize Scripture," or "I'm too young to memorize Scripture", or it is unfruitful, or of no practical good. Mahatma Gandhi was once quoted as saying "The Bible is full of power, yet most Christians treat it as if it were merely literature." As Brother Zhang recounted, it takes time "to lay up God's words in our hearts." Did he feel that time to be lost, or improperly spent, or unwisely devoted? No. Psalm 19:9-10 and Psalm 119:72 describe God's Word as more valuable than diamonds or gold, sweeter than honey. Should we not hide such treasures in our heart--against the day when we have no Bible at hand? Whether young or old, new or wizened in the faith, hide the Word! Whether harried by the tyranny of time and schedule, or possessing copious time to devote to one's Maker and His Holy Writ--read God's Word as many times as you can, and memorize as much as you can. Find an accountability partner to help you. Consider investing in a Bible memorization program for your computer. I have been using a good program to help in this, called Memlok. It can be found at www.memlok.com. Consider the following:
10 Reasons to Own MemLok (Plus 4 FREE Gifts With FREE SHIPPING)
- Review - Always remains 5 minutes a day even if you learn all 550 cards.
- Print color business cards on card stock 12 to a page or on Avery 10/page.
- Print coloring pages 8.5x11" and reproduce millions!
- Practice Typing your Scripture. Corrects even the reference as you type.
- Quiet Time Meditation Sheet helps "apply" as you see the verse in context
- Personal Notes allows you to journal and tracks each person separately
- Application Questions for all 550 cards. Learn Godly reply to world, flesh, Satan.
- Everyone selects their own verses from 48 topics. Motivation for all is greater
- Free Reproduction for Evangelism - Prisons, Children's Clubs
- MemLok will keep you busy for 10 years at one verse a week.
- OK, 11 reasons, it works on ANY Windows Operating System
Here's a 30 minute Video on How To Use MemLok
Another good tool for memorizing God's Word is "The Topical Memory System", available from www.navpress.com. Whatever way we hide the word in our heart, though, the important thing is to begin and keep at it. In the spirit of the Psalmist, we hide the word in our heart, so that we may not sin against God. That's kind of important, isn't it? According to Mr. Zhang, and to the Psalmist, YES!