Holding Onto Truth

So, you're sitting in ___(Bible Study, Church, small group, your living room with your Bible on your lap)____ and you read or hear something powerful.  A particular verse, a comment someone else makes, an experience shared, or a principle taught... it hits you between the eyes and you KNOW it's a truth you needed to take to heart and implement in your life.

WHAT NOW?

This is where I've been parking my brain lately.

Throughout my childhood, my late teen years after God drew me back to Him, and the first decade of my adult life, I have had many times of feeling bowled over by truth.  Again and again, God has put truth in my life that I needed to hear and implement.

But I don't know if it's human nature, or my former tendency to cram for a test and then forget the facts/information I studied once I've taken the test, but whatever the case, I've realized something: I don't hold onto truth well.

Below I've listed some ways I've found to hold onto truth and implement it in my life. I would LOVE to hear ways that you've found to KEEP and IMPLEMENT the truth that God reveals in your life.

  • Printing out verses/passages/ideas and placing them in obvious places in my home
  • Talking about it with Doug 
  • Having accountability from women friends
  • Trying to hold onto it in my mind as I read through Scripture, taking special note of applicable verses and passages I run across
  • All of these things done with prayer and journaling

Of all of these, the first is most helpful for me, which may be a personality thing-- keeping WORDS visually in front of me is extremely beneficial.  At times when we are in-between apartments though (which has been often lately), it's difficult.  Right now, for example, I don't have a printer, and haven't since March; plus, I don't want to mess up walls in a temporary residence.  Just writing this out has helped me realize that this may be a big reason why I feel mentally "fuzzy" lately.  I'm missing those normal opportunities that I rely on to hold onto truth.

At the same time, people have gone thousands of years reaching out to God, and clinging to His truth without a printer and scotch tape!  :)  

Please share ideas of how you have been able to HOLD onto truth God reveals to you.  How do you mentally imprint truth in your heart and life?  Let's help one another to live biblically.



Image: Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

12 comments:

Mel Brewer said...

Two ideas for you: If you can stand having to patch just one small hole when you leave, put up a white board in the best possible location, with your (currently) most important tidbit of truth on it. The other idea, so you can have it with you all the time, is to crochet up a quick little bracelet (akin to tying a ribbon on your finger) in some pretty or meaningful color to remind you of your commitment to remember that truth. Just a thought. I would be lost without my printer, so I feel your pain. (Hope you are in one of the few areas of TX that got a bit of rain recently. My kids and I have been praying for you and all those dealing the drought and fires.)

Anonymous said...

I find that the act of writing down a truth and/or scripture helps to place it more firmly in my mind. If I do it with colored ink on pretty paper, I can scotch tape it to a mirror, or the window over my sink. Then I can see it & the residue cleans up easily.

Silvia said...

Hiya! I'm quite visual too, and to your last remark on people having held onto God's word for thousand of years without a printer and scotch tape I can maybe offer a couple of practical suggestions to overcome current restraints:

1) write it out in your best long hand, perhaps several times (you know, old school style, helps memorising) on a piece of paper that will fit on the front cover of your Bible and fix it there

2) same as above but use fridge magnets to stick it to your fridge

3) rather than using tape, use blue tack and stick it to cabinets and doors - no marks left

A less direct visual approach: sometimes people who are anxious are encouraged to put a mark on their triggers, so, for example, if someone is anxious about time, a sticky red dot on their watch acts as a reminder to engage in their coping mechanisms. Perhaps something similar could be used? so, if the truth that smacks you in the face is about how you use time, a little sticky dot on your watch/clock face could act as a reminder to hold on to it

Hope this helps, your writing certainly make ME think - and sorry for not engaging more often in the comments/conversation, it's still a messy season of life for me.

Blessings,

Silvia

Kate (a.k.a. Domestikate) said...

I need visual and audio reminders as well. Here are a few things in addition to the things on your list above that I have implemented in my life:

-I spray painted an old picture frame and put cork board in it. I hung it right by the sink so I can tack on thoughts or scriptures and meditate on them while I am working in the kitchen (which is often).

-I realized at some point that I knew all the old sitcoms theme songs, but had a hard time memorizing scripture. Now I pray and ask the Lord to give me a tune to put to Scripture that I am trying to memorize. I have a cheap little MP3 recorder and record myself singing the songs until they are engrained in my brain.

-Another thing recent thing I have begun to do to help me be consistent in prayer, especially intercession, is draw out my prayer list using markers or oil pastels. This keeps my prayer times fresh and I can pray for someone for several days as I finish their "picture". I have also encouraged friends by sending them these pages with the Scripture verses I have prayed for them. I first saw this in a book called Praying in Color and have since expanded on it (prayingincolor.com. I am sure you could do this with any thought or idea you want to remember.

Janet said...

I find that I really need to write about thoughts and ideas. I let them roll around in my heart and mind for a while but unless I force myself to put words and sentences to the thoughts, they tend to stay jumbled and then are easily forgotten. If I make myself write about them, to create an appeal to myself and others, then I find that 1) I can go back to them over and over and often "find" them at moments I need them most and 2) That they just tend to "stick" better in my heart. I've written in various ways over the years - journaling, letters to people (including my kids), and blogging. Each of these have served their purpose in various ways.

Kim said...

Jess,

I may be wrong, but it seems to me that you are less concerned with memorization, than implemention. I have a few key verses that I make sure I read every day. I pray over them and try and listen to what God is telling me.

Kim

Anonymous said...

Index cards work wonders for me! I just put them on the fridge, on the mirror in the bathroom, prop them up on knick knacks by my chair, on the window where I wash dishes, etc... Nothing that will leave a mark, but I still need that in order for me to "get it." I have been doing this since I was in my late 20's, and I am now 45. I know of no better way than colored index cards - alot of them - plastered around to remind me that my Father has left me some very instructions. The way I look at is that He went to alot of trouble to impart that knowledge to me, so it needs to "trouble" me. I also share with my ladies bible study, as I have found the more I share the more I get the message ingrained. Go with God!!!
In His grace, by His grace, for His grace,
Karan

OurCrazyFarm said...

As much as I need to write to process and remember things, I find that the verses that I have memorized are the ones that carry me through.

Missus Wookie said...

Index cards and photo display from IKEA - the triangle sort where you flip the photos? Or any form of photo frame which can stand up. Write it out and slip it inside, or put a pretty picture inside and write on the glass with a write on/wipe off pen or pencil.

At the moment my three favourite quotes I NEED to have in front of me are bluetaked to the box files on my desk, I have another stuck on a bowl on my bookcase. For years I had posters, hand drawn ones stuck up on doors with blue tak.

Bookmarks too, slips of paper where I wrote things down in my wallet.

Finding ways to decorate without marking walls (or in this house without too many vertical ones) is a common theme in my life.

Anonymous said...

I find myself writing it over and over and over again in a daily journal. I also write longhand the verse or idea and hang it on the fridge. I try to go back and review earlier entries in my journal.

Prayer and fasting over a particular truth. I am learning so much more about the power of fasting to remove spiritual obstacles. It doesn't have to be 40 days or food.

Praying chapters or whole books of the Bible help me. I was deeply troubled once and prayed out loud while weeping the whole book of Lamentations and up to Psalms 27 when the Lord told me to "Wait.." and I was immediately calmed.

Also, putting "it" whatever "it" is into action, even if it's a small action.

For example, I was convicted about feeding the hungry. This seemed like such a large and overwhelming problem that I almost gave up and did nothing. But then, the Holy Spirit prompted me -- buying a bag of groceries for the local food shelter is a good first step. So I find out their greatest need and bought a bunch of peanut butter that they asked for.

Jamie said...

I like to add my favorite verses/quotes in my bible-- the front and back covers (white pages, even the table of contents pages are written on) I kind of treat my bible as a scrap book, I like to add typed and printed poems or quotes or even song lyrics that are particularly poignant to my life at a given time. likewise with scriptures I have chicken-scratched on the white pages in the beginning of my bible, I like to write out the whole verse, and leave it random, like when you were young and had your friends sign your yearbook--- I find that the little blocks of text help me to remember where it was, and what I like about this, is that I know (beyond a doubt) that a specific verse is in the front or the back and I turn there, I know the general area where I scrolled it, but then I get lost re-reading the other verses/truths that are very special to me, it has proven to be very encouraging anytime I am looking for one thing and I am hit in the face with another truth that seems to be brilliantly new to me!

I appreciate when the Spirit meets me in those moments, when He opens my eyes anew-- they should be treasured, even if I like a particular passage, I will make a note on a page I know I will see often to make sure I go there, and when I do turn to that particular scripture, I am taken away by the notes I have scrolled in that vicinity, it makes me think of those "choose your ending" books you may remember when you were little--- it's a treat anytime I see my old notes, where is that girl, and that wisdom? can't possibly have been me-- I would love to share a story about how the Lord used this system with me to prepare me for trials no one else could have prepared me for-- and the funny thing is, that it was as if I was teaching myself just a year before those trials took place.. but another time, I hate taking up too much space.

Jamie

Jess said...

You guys are incredibly wise. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts about this- I am enjoying reading through all these various ways that I've not thought of to keep God's word in front of my eyes and heart. Thank you!