Have you ever heard the sound of discontent? The "I don't get anything out of the sermon." line. I have, and I have been there. When you're bopping heads (not really) to help 7 sit still and you're trying to keep the activity in your row to a minimum, sometimes there's not a word that a can remember after I leave the place. It's discouraging. Makes me want to forget the battle of even going.
But one thing I have found.
For years I struggled to read my Bible. Some people found it funny that a missionary would forget or struggle with the reading of God's Word. Sometimes, like I said, I forgot, but other times it was just plain wearying. I couldn't get engaged in what was being read.
Maybe I'm ADD or ADHD, don't know, but I tend to think better when I'm actively involved in what I'm doing. I don't do well at sticking to a task, and tend to flit from one to another.
One day I found a program called Scripture Typer at www.scripturetyper.com . As you type in scripture, it keeps track of your speed and then keeps you typing at that speed. If you get faster, it will challenge you.
You can choose between typing the first letter of each word or typing everything out. I choose to type everything out because it gives me more time to think about what I'm typing.
It will let you know when you need to review a verse. After you master a verse, you will review it the next day. Then for each successful attempt, you review it that many days later. For example: if I've typed Romans 8 twelve times successfully, then I won't need to review it for twelve days.
You only work on what you've done. So the more verses you have in your review list, the more you'll be working on. I like that you work at your own pace.
I've talked about Scripture Typer before, but not about the blessings. You see, I've always struggled during my quiet time to stay focused and engaged in what I'm reading. Maybe it's the little ones running under my feet. Now that they're older I can train my mind to focus again.
But I've found that as I'm typing whole chapters in a day and sometimes two or three, I am more engaged in what I'm reading. I think "What does that mean? I've memorized this before but now I'm not sure what that means exactly." And so I have questions for Pastor.
Or better yet, when he discusses a passage that I've been working on I get ecstatic. It thrills me to go over these sections of the Word that have become so dear to me. They're like good friends and sitting down to discuss them is so refreshing. It's like balm to my soul.
And I think that since Pastor is studying through I Corinthians with us. That should be my next plan to memorize it. Because that is how I get stuff out of the sermon. By being actively engaged in the Word during the week. It's not his job to entertain me. It's my job to be ready to hear what the Lord has to say to me from His Word. I'm not ready if I'm not doing my own study.
I'm pretty sure that this won't be the most effective method for everyone, but for me it is. I love getting into the Word and studying it. I actually don't even spend a lot of time in commentaries. Just keep typing His Word and it becomes so alive.
Keep pressing on.