It’s amazing- many people have no problem memorizing lyrics to a song, sports statistics, or certain lines from movies, but when they attempt to memorize Scripture- their minds go blank! Why is that?
Maybe it is because they have gone about it the wrong way. Scripture memorization is often presented as more or less a Christian discipline. Well-intentioned believers work hard to memorize Scripture in order to fulfill an important role in their spiritual life.
Through a little bit of effort, they can manage to remember their verses for a period of time. The problem is that after their efforts have ceased, they fail to retain those verses after a while.
The key is to memorize for a different reason. In fact, it is helpful not to even think of it as memorizing. Instead, focus on USING the Scripture. Use verses to build up your faith in a time of need.
For example, when you are tempted to despair that you won’t be able to make ends meet, find the verse, My God shall supply all of your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19). Go back to it over and over again- not to memorize it, but to get comfort from it.
Speak it out loud, because faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God (Romans 10:17). Before you realize it, you’ll have memorized it. Because you have used it and drawn from it, you will more likely retain it. Most people remember John 3:16 because they have heard it so much and used it with others.
If you struggle with fear, find verses that deal with that and you will overcome. You’ll find yourself quoting verses from memory to help others. If you want to know more of God’s love, find verses about His love for you and go back to them over and over again to strengthen yourself. You’ll cherish those verses and they will start to stick.
The key is using the Word to get encouragement or to fight battles. The Word is a sword, and more Christians need to learn how to use it and not just admire it!