Thursday, November 14, 2019

Three Things to Ask of God in Preparing for Hard Times, Part 2

Last month I was visiting my daughter in Germany who just had her second baby, another girl. The three year old liked it when I sang Sunday School choruses to her. As I racked my brain for all the choruses I could think of, I sang to her

Read your Bible
Pray every day
Pray every day
Pray every day
Read your Bible 
and Pray every day
and you'll grow, grow, grow!

This is my first and best preparation and response to trials and persecution. It sounds cliche, but it's true! The thing is, too often we wait until the trial comes and then begin praying like crazy for God to fix it or take it away. If we just flip open our Bibles you never know what verse we might hit, maybe my brother-in-law's favorite as a child: There was a man in the land of Uz...

So often I have found that the help and lesson God wants me to find is in my next reading in wherever I am in scripture. Hebrews 4:12 is true: The Word of God is living and active... I may have read the passage twenty times before, but I find it timely today. We need to read large chunks of the Word, have times of meditation in smaller portions, memorize scripture, and have verses in places where we will see them during the day--maybe a coffee mug or a bookmark.

And what should we pray? One thing is to pray through scripture, repeating it back to God in your own words, stating--out loud maybe--who God is, what He does, and what He has promised. Pray for ourselves that we would live as God would have us no matter what comes our way. 

James says, "Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials" (1:2).  Paul wrote to the Romans "We also exult in our tribulation..." (5:1) And Peter said, "In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while if necessary you have been distressed by various trials..." (1 Pet. 1:6) We need to pray for the right response to trials: Joy! What's to be joyful about during hard times? God is giving us an opportunity to be refined more into the character of His Son.

We should also be praying that when trials come, we will have the right attitude--one of being teachable. Otherwise we won't be refined. While I was doing this study I came down with an ear infection. I get ear infections on a regular basis and even though I was thousands of miles from home, my doctor had supplied me with the antibiotic I needed. My basic thought was, "Got this covered. Minor inconvenience." The next morning as I continued to study, I realized I had not asked God what He wanted me to learn from this situation and to help me be willing to learn it.

Peter said, "For a little while". When we are going through a trial, it never seems like a little while, so we can be praying that we would have the right outlook: eternal. Paul talked about "this momentary light affliction" (2 Cor. 4:17) In the light of eternity it is a little while and momentary. I can think of two trials I have gone through that lasted years. My secondary infertility went on for two years. It seemed like forever, but now it was 29 years ago! A person very close to us who left the faith for ten years was a heartache, but now that I have four children and nine grandchildren and the person is seeking God I wonder at my hopelessness and despair, even as I rejoice. 

As I studied this topic, I came up with ten ways to pray to prepare for trials. I'm sure there are more, but these are the first three I found. Surely if Jesus told us we would have tribulation (John 16:33) He meant for us to be prepared. I cannot think of better ways to prepare than listening to God and talking to Him.

What have you told your children about tough times?
Tonight at dinner ask them what they think God would want them to pray about hard times.

Then come back next week and see more ways to pray to prepare for trials and even persecution.

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Friday, November 8, 2019

Praying, Trials, and Persecution, Part 1

I will be the first person to tell you that I don't like trials.

I don't want persecution. I'm a coward. When I read about some of the things people have gone through for the name of our Lord, I just say, "Lord, I don't know if I could do it. Please never let me deny You!" And then I remind Him, "By the way, I would really prefer to not suffer persecution." Like I said, I'm a coward.

But persecuted believers around the world say over and over again, "Don't pray that our persecution stops." Unbelievable! These people are super saints. That should be Super Saints. That is absolutely the first thing I would pray for.

But I've been thinking and studying about this a lot recently and I have become convinced that we should be praying to be prepared for trials and persecution. When they come we should not be taken by surprise and we should be ready to meet them in a way that glorifies God.

I want to be a One Person person 
--Jesus Christ and Him crucified

I came to this line of studying in what my family calls "chain link" thought. (They actually use it as a joking pejorative for some preachers who don't seem to know where they are going and one thought leads to another.) Here's my chain:
   - I read Rosalind Goforth's book, How I know God Answers Prayer
   - I decided to study through the verses she had at the end on the Secret of Victory
   - This eventually brought me to John 15 on abiding and bearing fruit
   - Verse 2 talks about God pruning those who are in Christ and bear fruit so they can bear more fruit
   - Pruning is often done through trials. 
   - Persecution is definitely a trial.
   - So if I see that I will have trials, how can I be ready so they have the desired outcome of more fruit?

Whether God uses small everyday trials, rejection by the world, or outright persecution, I want to be ready. 

In the United States, and in much of the Western World, we have not experienced much persecution. Yet. Our nations in recent history have been founded on the basis of freedom of religion. However, today, I see that this is moving more and more toward freedom from religion. Consider these few signs I have heard just in the past few days:
  • Teen Challenge, an organization founded in 1959 to help detox drug addicts, has accepted state licensing and funds and therefore is now limited in it's ability to share the gospel, the basis for helping addicts
  • All the Democratic presidential candidates support homosexual marriage and many want to censure churches that will not perform these marriages
  • California signed into law a bill that will force public colleges and universities to provide free abortion inducing drugs for students up to 10 weeks of pregnancy starting in January 2023
  • A Canadian father was ordered by a court to change the pronoun he used for his 14 year old child who was born a girl.
  • In my own experience, I took my two three year old granddaughters to story time at the public library and the librarian read a book celebrating the marriage of two men.
I definitely don't want to get political and I don't want to be a one "issue" person. I want to be a One Person person--Jesus Christ and Him crucified--living the life He wants me to live, following Him in every area of my life. So as I stand up and say that in a world that is increasingly against everything He stands for, everything He taught, and, yes, against Him Himself, I will be persecuted. It could be as simple as someone refusing to speak to me or spreading the story that I'm "intolerant." Or it could get much, much worse.

That is why I think I need to prepare my heart, my life, my soul and my spirit for trials, troubles, and persecution. Jesus said it. "In the world you have tribulation." But He didn't end there. He continued, "But take courage, I have overcome the world." John 16:33 If He is the One who has overcome, I need to know Him through the Bible and prayer and be ready to walk with Him through whatever may come.

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The next few posts will be about what I am learning about how to prepare my heart for the future which will hold trials, problems, difficulties, and possibly persecution. Please walk with me through this. As you read through my posts, consider how you can talk about these things with your children. A friend recently told me, "We are not raising children, we are preparing adults." What a great way to look at parenting. Are you preparing your children for the world they will enter?

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Thursday, October 17, 2019

Seventeen Dufflebags, Japanese Food, Cockroaches, and Rubber Stamps

or Peru, And How We Got There

On this day in 1984 two young people, feeling very grown up and, at the same time, young and vulnerable, left the United States on a one way ticket for a country where they had never been before. Getting there was a twentieth century odyssey.

With our 17 duffle bags of luggage, we flew out of Chicago saying good-bye to Jim's parents and a few people from our sending church to Miami where we were met by a son and father, each with the same name, who were friends of my inlaws. They told us that their hospitality would be somewhat meager because their wife and mother was in the hospital with Guillain-BarrĂ© syndrome! They had come to the airport in their car, but since we were flying stand-by the next day we had to take all our luggage with us. The father decided to take me home with my carry-ons (a sewing machine and a "portable" typewriter!) and get the church van. He just opened the door for me and let me in the house and went back to the airport to get Jim and all the luggage. I didn't know which room was ours, so I sat in the living room waiting for them to return. It was hot and humid and suddenly I heard noises like someone trying to open a window. Just like on TV, I went to investigate. Turns out it was a parrot scratching around in his cage. When they all arrived back, he apologized that he hadn't shown me our room or anything else so I could make myself comfortable.

The next day the father went to work and the hospital so the son showed us around Miami some. I remember him complaining that there are so many non-Floridians there now. He said, "We ought to make a law that anyone who hasn't lived here at least five years has to leave." Me: [blank look]

We took him to a restaurant to thank him. He chose a Japanese place. We had never had Japanese food and whatever it was we ordered we didn't really like, so we spent a lot of money on an ethnic experience we wished we hadn't had. Later in the airport, we decided to have one last McDonalds hamburger before leaving the country. Taking the airport train to the terminal with a McD's we ate cold hamburgers and soggy french fries. Two disappointing "last meals" in the United States for who knew how long?

When the son dropped us back at the airport with all our luggage we got a skycap (I don't think they even have them any more!) to load up all our bags onto a huge cart and go to one airline where we could fly on standby. The skycap dumped all our bags on the floor and left. We tipped him what we considered an extravagant amount, but he frowned at it. Maybe they always did that to see if they could get more, or to make you want to give more the next time. The airline gave us a price that sounded so high, we decided to check out the other airline. Jim said he would go and I could stay with the luggage and if it were good he would come back to get all the luggage...and me!

We ended up flying on the second airline and tipping a second skycap to move our stuff to another end of the terminal. After everything was checked through we went off to a bank of pay phones to call our parents. I remember having to put three dollars worth of quarters into the phone while I was already talking to my mother. "We have our luggage checked." Clank, clank "The flight leaves at 7:15pm." Clank, clankity-clank "First we go to Grand Cayman" Clank, clank

The reason we had to fly to the Cayman Islands instead of a direct flight to Peru is that there were no direct flights in those days. (Any millennial who has read this far, is probably asking in what century this took place!) The planes Peruvian airlines--both now defunct--flew made too much noise to be allowed by the FAA to land in US airports. So of course, Peru said, the US airlines could not fly into Peru either because tit for tat and you would get all the business and big, bad USA is bullying us again. So one Peruvian airline made a deal with Cayman Air and another with Jamaica Air and Eastern which had flown into Lima made a deal with some other Caribbean Island. Nearing midnight we landed on Grand Cayman and were all ushered into a metal shed where a bartender spoke a form of English I could not understand at all. All I remember about my first Caribbean island was that it was hot and humid late at night in the middle of October so, why would anyone ever want to vacation here?

We boarded the Faucett plane and settled in our seats when a large cockroach walked up to the top of the seat in front of us, looked at us, and wiggled his antennae. Thankfully I was too tired to react or even consider the possibility that he had a friend somewhere else on the airplane, like in my seat!

We landed at Jorge Chavez airport at about 2 a.m. and stood in line with everyone else to go through customs. I could hear bang-bang, bang-bang and wondered what the sound was. When we got up to the desk with the official, I discovered that he was stamping passports and papers and reinking continuously. Bang-bang, stamp-stamp! It seemed like there were dozens of official documents to stamp to make our entry into Peru legal. (Side note: a couple of months later I was watching a little girl about three play with some papers she had found. She was pretending to stamp each one and ink the invisible stamp before affixing the stamps. I realized this was a way of life!)

We saw our senior missionaries and waved to them along with another new missionary as we gathered all our luggage onto the cart with the help of a porter who looked somewhat official. When we got out our new colleagues handed us red and white carnations "the colors of the flag", gave us a quick greeting, and rushed around loading our mountain of luggage into the van another kind missionary, who we didn't know, had brought to convey us home. It seemed like ten people appeared out of nowhere to "help" load the duffle bags. The missionaries were telling us to watch to make sure everything went into the van and no where else and to hang onto to our purses, wallets and other items. A boy was tugging on my coat and talking non-stop. I turned to one of the missionaries and asked, "What is he saying?" Our friend cocked his ear and listened for a minute and then said, "He's saying, 'I'm the one doing all the work here. I'm the only one who should get a tip.'"

Finally we were all piled into cars and drove through the dark and quiet streets home, only slowing for red lights. Our senior missionary said that at this time of night it wasn't a good idea to come to a complete stop, but that he did usually obey the traffic signals. 

At their house we unloaded everything into the tiny entry of their two story row house, had a quick word of prayer to thank God for a safe arrival, and then everyone wanted to go to bed. We were shown to the "prophet's chamber" on the flat roof of their house. There were two twin beds and a table. We climbed into the beds that felt cold and clammy due to the humidity in the air. We laid there a few minutes and then a rooster crowed, and I thought, "Where have I come to?"

Thanks for reminiscing with me about that eventful day 35 years ago. I had fun remembering everything about that defining moment in my life. Now that we base ourselves in the US I never know what to say when someone asks "Where are you from?" And I dislike my name tag at conferences saying that I live in a small city in Iowa, because it doesn't tell my story. This is part of my story. As I write this, I realize that everyone has more of a story than we can know through a name tag or an address. I realize I need to ask more questions and listen more intently, to hear between the words and find out people's fuller stories in order to connect with them more.

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Friday, October 11, 2019

Hitting the Goals! ...or Not

As I was looking through my calendar, I came across my goals that I set at the beginning of the year. I guess I kind of forgot I had goals, but it was pretty good to read through them, or at least through the first few.

  • Finish reading through the Bible -- I was on a two year through the Bible plan because I find trying to get through in one year makes me just read without thinking. Or the only thing I am thinking is "Gotta finish. Gotta finish." So my goal was to finish by the end of the year. I was consistently ahead of my plan and then during the month of Ramadan we met nightly to pray for Muslims. Since they read through the Koran during that month, we decided to read through the New Testament. We did this out loud together each night. I have to say, I thoroughly enjoyed reading large chunks of Scripture and something about hearing it out loud made it more real. I've been working on scripture memorization the last few years again, so when I came across those familiar verses and passages, it was great to read them in context. I decided that our reading "counted" toward my through-the-Bible, and so I finished in June! Yay! One goal was met. Then I moved on to other reading during my quiet times.

  • Get to 160 verses memorized -- I was there already! And looking back at my Bible Memory™ app, I saw that I had only missed a few days of review this year--mostly when I was traveling. So now I'm well past that and have set a new goal. I have to say, that this is one of the most enjoyable things I do. Sometimes I get frustrated by my failure to remember simple things or getting confused between the old KJV that I first memorized some verses in and the NASB that I now use, but mostly, I find myself marveling again at the truths I am hiding in my heart.
  • Lose 10 pounds -- How many years has this been on my New Year's Goals? Well, I wasn't doing well and I was asking God why I was always so hungry and eating so many things I shouldn't, especially between meals. And asking for HELP! In June we went away for 3 weeks and I came home seven pounds lighter! We were so busy I didn't snack (plus I wasn't in my own kitchen) and the last week, which was vacation, we were so active that I guess I was eating less and using more calories. At home, I kept it up, snacking on Bing cherries and lost another seven pounds slowly over two months. But then something happened and I went back up four just before I came away to be at my daughter's for three weeks to help with her new baby. So far I'm getting almost no exercise here (as my pedometer tells me) and feel like I might be snacking again, so I'm hoping the rain will stop and I will be able to go walking again. But I'm here to help, not exercise. Anyway, another goal met! Yay me! (Even though this is an on-going, rest of my life challenge.) 
Then I read the next goal:
  • Go to the grocery store only once a week -- Oh. Dear. Recently it's been more like "only" once a day. Between eating tons of veggies and needing to replenish the supply often, unplanned-for guests, forgetting an item (or ten), and having a craving for a dinner I don't have the food for, I have totally failed at this. I have a lot of excuses about being busy, extenuating circumstances, and blah, blah, blah, but this is one I need to work on. Anyone else? It takes time planning a menu, checking the pantry, listing the ingredients, sticking to the menu, having a few emergency things on hand for added people around the table, and forcing myself to eat what I have and not a craving. If I need more veggies than my large fridge can hold, I can go get those, but I don't need to go just because I forgot the yogurt or suddenly want curry sauce.
So, like I said in January, I'd love to have some grocery store buddies--not the clerks who check me out, though I'm glad they're friendly--but ones who will say with me, "While I love Aldi, I don't really want that place to be my hangout!" What do you say?

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Thursday, October 3, 2019

Nine Books Worth Reading - Or Listening To!

I recently went along with Alan Shepard, the first American in space. I also orbited the earth with John Glenn. And then I flew in Apollo 11 and experienced the amazement of being the first human to set foot on the moon along with Neil Armstrong. It was a fascinating experience!

Of course, I didn't actually join these men. But I listened to the book Shoot for the Moon; The space race and the extraordinary voyage of Apollo 11 by James Donovan. Although I'm not into rockets, space, or even sci-fi, this book captivated my attention (and made doing mundane jobs like cleaning floors and dusting more enjoyable).  It's just one of the books I've gone through this year. And one I would recommend.

Since October is National Book Month, I thought I would tell you about some of the books that I've read or listened to recently. Maybe you are looking for a good book for yourself or to read to you family. I am a voracious reader and my favorite genre is biography or autobiography, but I venture out into other categories as well. I remember enjoying Eddie Rickenbacker's biography so much that I read chapters of it to my kids during a car ride. They were engrossed by his exploits as a WW1 Ace, race car driver, and his twenty-four days adrift in the Pacific after his plane went down. At the time, my four children were aged five to fourteen. And yet it held all their attention.  A book that will help connect your family, doesn't have to be a children's story!

I find most of my books through our public library's electronic lending library, but I also read paper copies checked out from there and loans from friends. Once in a while I even bite the bullet and buy a book! Here are some more books I've enjoyed recently.

Daring to Drive: A Saudi woman's awakening by Manal Al-Sharif. This is the story of a woman in Saudi Arabia who went from being a strict Muslim, even melting her brother's cassette tapes in the oven because they were not allowed, to challenging the status quo to be able to do the simple activity of driving herself around town. She never intended to become an activist, but ended up even going to prison to fight for her rights.

My daughter was in the Middle East recently looking into Arabic language schools, so I read another book that she had about Middle Eastern culture: Miniskirts, Mothers, and Muslims: A Christian woman in a Muslim land by Christine Mallouhi, an Australian married to an Arab. The book is full of anecdotes about herself and other expats who were learning how to live in the Middle Eastern cultures and their successes and failures. I found it particularly interesting because there were parts I could relate to having lived in South America and also made me wonder what faux pas I have made in various parts of the world that we have visited for our work with Emmaus International

I decided to take a plunge into some fiction for a while and listened to Lynette Eason's series Hidden Identity, No One to Trust, Nowhere to Turn, and No Place to Hide. I have to say that I find most Christian fiction insipid and most secular fiction too immoral to want to read, so these books were a refreshing change. My one complaint was that there was a lot of killing. The books do tend to follow a pattern after a while, but it was still a fun read, or actually, listen.

I listened to Orphan Train Rider: One boy's true story, by Andrea Warren. This is the story of one of the children who rode on the trains in the early 1900's to find a family in the midwest because their parents were dead or unable to care for them. The chapters are interwoven between historical facts about the 200,000 children who rode these trains and Lee Nailling's own story of his life as one of the children who had to leave all his family and start a new life at nine years old.

Usually I am enjoying two books at the same time, one to read and one to listen to. I generally get two very different genres so I don't confuse the stories. I'm currently reading How I Know God Answers Prayer by Rosalind Goforth, a book that encourages me to take every need and desire to the Lord in prayer.  And I'm listening to Becoming Dallas Willard: The formation of a philosopher, teacher and Christ follower by Gary W. Moon. This is the October free book from I have appreciated some of Dallas' writing in the past, so I thought I would enjoy his biography. I have only listened to about an hour of it so far, but it is amazing to hear what difficulties God allows people to go through to allow them to be used later in life by Him.

So tell me, what are you reading these days? I'm always on the lookout for books worth reading!

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Thursday, August 29, 2019

Where Summers Go

It started with a kiss goodbye. My husband and I boarded different planes to end up in the same city to visit our daughter and family in Frankfurt, Germany.

After a quick, fun visit we headed to Hungary for a conference with the Emmaus International directors from around Europe. While we were there our eighth grandchild was born! In fact, the head of Emmaus International and his wife are the other grandparents of this baby and we were all there waiting for the news! As we went for a walk along the Danube we got a text that they were going in so we stopped to pray together.

A few hours later when we knew the baby had been born, we received another text that the baby, born three weeks early, had low oxygen levels and our son, who is king of low-key, said, "The nurse was unimpressed." We knew that was serious and stopped the meeting we were in and asked them to pray for this precious little one. Within half an hour another text came in that said, "She's doing much better!" We found out later that the nurse had told him that if she didn't improve in half an hour she would be helicoptered to a larger hospital!

From Hungary we had a layover in Kiev, Ukraine for six hours on our way to visit the Emmaus office in Moldova. The Ukrainian Emmaus Director met us at the airport and took us around the city and out for dinner before heading back to the airport. But he cut the time very close  and we got stuck in traffic, making us all but certain we would miss our flight. Just as the road began to open up a tire in our car blew out. My husband jumped out of the car, stuck out his thumb and another car stopped! The driver spoke English!! We asked if he could take us to the airport, only about 10 minutes from where we were by that point. As God's angels always do, he said yes. We gave the director a gift we hoped would cover the cost of the tire, grabbed our carry-on luggage and jumped in the car with this stranger who happily left us at the airport.

There, we jumped the security line and explained to the people that we might miss our flight. They let us go ahead. Then we asked a guard in passport control if we could jump that line and he put us through the pilot and diplomat line. We made our flight.

After a fascinating weekend getting to know the director in Moldova, and seeing a former Communist Young Pioneer camp which is a Bible Camp today, as well as having the opportunity to minister in two different local churches, we flew to Rome where we took part in an international conference teaching in two of the seminars and enjoying the ministry and seeing many of our friends from all over the world.

Then we began our vacation! Six days in the Baltic countries of Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, and Norway with a long layover in Helsinki, Finland. We walked dozens of miles, rode bikes, traveled by train, boat, tram, car, bus, and plane and thoroughly enjoyed celebrating my husband's 60th birthday.

We came to our town (on separate flights and then together in the car) and met our newest granddaughter even before we set foot in our own home. The next day we had guests from the Middle East over for lunch and the day after that began the odyssey of my 91 year old dad and the hospital. He was hospitalized three times over the next month and finally spent almost three weeks in skilled nursing before coming home.

House guests from India arrived during the first hospitalization and after they left our daughter and family from Germany arrived for a month. The pool, picnics, parks, play dates with cousins, cookouts, family dinners, making, painting and racing wooden boats in a stream, birthday luncheon, farmer's markets, library story times, emergency room visits, girls night out, guys lunches, baby shower for grand number nine coming in October, doctor's appointments, the world's best milkshakes, my husband leaving for Asia, learning about catheter care, the aquarium, and then the Germans left for home. 

Just like that, summer was over. Full of family time. Getting those things done that are important--showing love to and supporting family. That's where my autumn will go as well and winter following that. My goal is to make family time and ministry a big part of my life, so I work hard to make that happen. It doesn't always, but it never will if I don't plan for it.

It's the same way with family meals. If you want them to happen, you have to just make them happen. When I asked my friends for their secrets to getting their family to eat together, the vast majority said, "We just do it." 

Maybe your summer slipped away. Don't let fall disappear, too. Crunch some leaves with your family--the kind you step on and the kind you eat.

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Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Memorize (and Remember) More Scripture!

Whenever I am actively memorizing scripture things begin to happen!

  • My prayers seem to include more scripture as a reminder to myself of God's promises and His will.
  • Songs make me think of verses and verses make me think of songs.
  • The worship meeting comes more alive as men share and I think of verses that go along with their ideas.
  • I find myself speaking scripture more often when talking with others.
  • Reading scripture makes more sense as I come across the passages I've studied and memorized in the midst of my regular reading.
Photo Credit: Daniel Johnson

I've started and stopped memorizing several times in my life. As a child I memorized for Sunday School, camps, VBS, our in-church memory program called Bible Memory Association, and our children's club called "Happy Hour", to get prizes. Those are the verses have stuck with me all my life. They are familiar and somewhat King Jamesy as that was what I first memorized in.

At around 16, I switched to the New American Standard Bible (that we called the "Naz-bee") and have done my English my memory work in that ever since. 

Before we moved to the mission field, I made an effort to learn more verses in English so that when I learned Spanish I would know what the verses meant. It turned out to be a very good idea because it was easier to memorize in Spanish what I already knew in English.

As a missionary, I began seriously memorizing verses with several women, in Spanish and, to my surprise, our extended prayer times changed as we prayed scripture to God. I hadn't expected that to happen.

When we moved back to the states, I lapsed for a while. Then one year I was studying the Wisdom of God and decided to memorize verses about that. When I injured both Achilles tendons one summer, my stretching exercises were a good time to review my verses. But after I quit the stretching, I quit reviewing and soon discovered I didn't remember many of the verses and grew discouraged. I didn't want to blame it on an aging brain!

Then a young woman I was discipling and I decided to each memorize one verse a week and hold each other accountable. That's when I decided to use BibleMemory, an app that helps keep track of the verses I'm memorizing and helps me set the review time by how well I do in the review. That was March 2017 and I've kept it up. At first I was sporadic in my review, but looking back at my history graph I see that I have only missed four days of review this year. 

I have to admit that I am inordinately proud when I reach a new level by earning points for memorization and review and keep track of my rank which has steadily improved. They even have "badges" that one can earn and I work to do that as well. Sure, I'm a grandma, but motivating prizes are still a good thing!

I currently have 162 verses memorized and I have my app set so that I review them all every month. (Longer than that and I start forgetting all but the most familiar!) It only takes me about 10 minutes each morning and the app tells me what verses I need to review each day.

Recently a group of us prayed daily for Muslims around the world during their month of Ramadan and we also read out loud together the New Testament (about the size of the Quran which they are to read through). I loved seeing the passages I had memorized in their larger context.

No one at BibleMemory has asked me to write about their app, but it has been such a help to me that I wanted to share it again! Remember, review is the key to truly hiding things in your heart, and this has been the "secret" to my recent success.

For more ideas about verse memorization for you and your kids see these articles:
A Memory Plan for Kids that my son and daughter in law used for several years

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