Grandma and Grandpa sent a snuggly owl toy for John for Christmas and right away it was very important to our boy that his owl be named. Sweet John moved on quickly (he's far more easy to convince or to agree with mama than his big sister!) when I told him that Poo Poo Owl was not aacceptable. He went with James Owl instead and I'm quite sure James Owl will be a keeper for the long haul.
But another James is ringing in my heart today. In recent months, James has been the book the Lord is using to nail me down, pierce me through, and lay me in the light of his Son, in regards to my life as a mama.
2010 began a stretch of 1 Peter being the book that challenged me sharp and deep on my difficulty with submitting to culture battles here. "Be subject for the Lord's sake to every human institution.... be subject to your masters with all respect not only to the good and the gentle but also to the unjust" (1 Peter 2:13-25).... I applied this in my heart to be: Be subject for the Lord's sake to this human culture, not only when it's comfortable but even when it grates hard against all that I think is wise and decent and considerate and tolerable.
Back at that time, I tried to memorize 1 Peter.... then it became 1 Peter 1-3.... then 1 Peter 1..... and then, after meditating on the verses and soaking my brain and heart in it for months (no friends with me, I might add) I still didn't know the words secure and firm by heart. Meditating on it had been sweet indeed but I really did/do want the words locked down deep like seeds (Receive with meekness the implanted word). Embarrassed and discouraged.... I moved on and no plan since (and there have been several) has been completed either.
Now, my dear Ann is inviting others to join with her in Memorizing the Mount. As I looked over her memory booklet I realized that a definitive plan was completely absent from my memory plan. And so, again I'm beginning this journey that I still hope will become a fixed anchor in my life to hold me under the shaping, transforming truth-light of the Word of God.
1) Memorizing James. 1 chapter a month Feb - June..... end of June, James is in there.
2) Keep a notebook. Exactly which verses this week? Say it weekly to a friend. Emily, thank you for your partnership in this! I praise the Lord for you..... I'm eager to share verses, applications, prayer spots with you and others along the way too.
3) Ann writes a bit about the A.R.T. of memorizing scripture and for now I'm just fixed on the Attending... The Word in the morning, in the kitchen, at the table, while nursing, for a water break, before class, during their nap.... Her encouragement is so sweet, and Piper's challenge, and the recap of Dr. Andrew Davis' seven tips for memorizing (all at the post of Ann's).
I'm aiming for a pace of 7 (+/-) verses per week.... that way in 2012 I might be able to tuck James and the Sermon on the Mount into my heart for fruitbearing? May it be Lord, by your grace, for your praise!
I'm a huge hungerer for community (most of us are, right?) and my community on the ground is very limited so please consider this the warmest invitation I can possibly deliver via blogger: I would love if any of you dear friends want to join me on this journey? Please come along.... Please let me know... it would be such a joy to journey with you. (Your pace for the journey is just fine...)
Oh may our days be filled with and revolve around and be anchored deep in the truth of God's word..... without it I'll be that double-minded man unstable, unsteady, unsturdy driven by and towards whatever waves of the day happen to bring my way. Lord steady me in you, your truth, your love, your promises.
Ann ends her Mount Memory Cards with these words... and I echo them now:
"So this commitment...
Committing our hearts to Him and His Word to our hearts."