Road Blocks to Bible Memorization

Bible memory. Scripture memorization.Patty Wysong at Patterings

Memorizing Bible verses can be hard enough, but when we don't see the things that prevent us from memorizing, it can be that much harder, if not impossible.

The other night as our ladies Bible study was wrapping up, I wrestled with the bag I use for hauling my study books in. They were getting hung up on a bag of special mints I keep in there as a reward for the ladies who have worked on their Bible memory verse. That night I hadn’t even asked if anyone had reviewed their verse. In all honesty, I was discouraged in that area of study but didn’t want to share my discouragement with the ladies. They’ve been so faithful in attending and participating and even writing out the passage we’re studying that I didn’t want to be a debby-downer nor a nag, so I simply left the bag of mints inside my bag.

But to get my books in the bag I pulled the mints out, and one of the ladies commented on them. So, I asked the dreaded question...

Has anyone worked on their memory verse?

And again, no one had. Their faces said it all.
That’s when I heard Dad’s voice in my head…

Why aren’t they trying to memorize anymore?

I didn’t know, so I asked them.
They had great answers! From silly to painfully honest...

  • “I have the memory of a goldfish.” (She doesn’t but it was definitely worth the giggle.) And if you want to think about this one seriously, if you have a bad memory that's the very reason you need to memorize --to exercise your brain and keep it learning new things. Use it or lose it.
  • “I didn’t know what to memorize. I just want you to tell me which verse.” (So I did. Right away. I’d had one in mind for her, right from the very beginning of this round of study.)
  • “You told me I couldn’t memorize the verse I wanted to.” (And she was right. I DID tell her no. Good grief! What kind of a teacher am I?! In my defense, I said no because I was sure she had memorized Ephesians 2:8-9 as a kid since she’d grown up in the church. But I also told her that if she began remembering the verses to add verse 10. Hehe.)
  • “I just haven’t done it.” (And I was thrilled to hear muttering coming from her corner even while shenanigans were going on as we worked through why I didn’t let MissM pick the verse she wanted.)

I could relate to each of their reasons.
Well, except for being told I couldn’t memorize the verse I wanted to. I had good teachers who encouraged me and told me I could, not one who told me I couldn’t. (Such a Duh moment for me! Sheesh!)

Part of succeeding is knowing what your handicap is and finding a work-around…finding what is preventing you from succeeding and then learning how to move past those things.

So tell me, what keeps you from memorizing?


  1. No excuse. It's purely not making it a priority. I keep saying I ought to, but I don't carry through.

    1. That's how it often is for me too, Vonnie. And I hate that. This round in ladies Bible study has provided me with some accountability and that's helped so much! (and I'm so thankful!)

  2. Definitely a priority thing with me too - but I AM getting a bit better. Helps that I practice AWANA verses with Annika regularly. Great reminder

  3. AWANA is excellent about Bible memorization! Funny how we (meaning me) seem to relegate Scripture memory to childhood, that it's something we don't need as adults... I'm so thankful for all the verses I memorized as a kid--for Sunday School, Bible Memory Association, and the year that I was in AWANA.

    I bet Annika will remember her verses AND the time you spent working with her for years to come! =] What a treasure!


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