Scriptures 2014

Recently I was rocking Simon to sleep.  He was tired and I was putting him to bed before we had scriptures or prayer.  I was thinking of - and slightly dreading - having scriptures that night.  We had finished memorizing the Articles of Faith the week before and had since been reciting either our favorite Article of Faith or reciting the last one we memorized (#13, see image below) together.  I wondered, what would we do for scripture study this year?

We do scripture study in the evening, before bed.  The morning doesn't work for us as Ted isn't always home, having worked the night before and not returned home before Gwenna goes to school.  So the evening, before Ted goes to work, works best for us.

For a while we were just reading in various books of scripture, and most recently the Book of Mormon, 4 scriptures a night.  Ted and I would each read one verse and then help the girls read one verse each.  It was concise and consistent but it wasn't working for us.

Sometimes it took more time to explain the context of the 4 scriptures - and the new words in sometimes lengthy verses - than it did to even read!  Our children became disinterested and we often became flustered or upset trying to get through it all, even just 4 verses.  Or, as an alternative, we wouldn't explain anything and then what was the point to begin with?

Found here AND it's a free printable:
This is why we turned to memorizing the Articles of Faith.  It worked so well for our family.  Sometimes we memorized them quickly, within a couple days, and sometimes we broke the longer ones up into two week endeavors.  It was much easier to explain the isolated pieces of doctrine than 4 verses at a time.  The girls understand most of them well and have memorized them just as well.  I loved it.  It worked great for us.

So, as I sat rocking my Simey, I pondered what to do this year.  We are studying the Old Testament in Sunday school this year so I thought it would be nice to somehow go along with that.  But reading through the Old Testament, 4 verses at a time, would take us years.  I also loved the memorization aspect of our study last year.  Elder Richard G. Scott said that memorizing a scripture is like forging a new friendship (see talk HERE).  You will, so long as you have that scripture in memory, be able to turn to it in times of need.  It was during this time of pondering that I decided to suggest to Ted that we memorize the 25 passages of scripture from the Old Testament seminary scripture mastery


I was instantly excited by the idea of working on scripture mastery scriptures.  I know they were revamped last year and having graduated seminary in 2002, I hadn't had much occasion to delve into some of the newer selections.

We started the same night.  We sat down with the girls and discussed the books of scripture and that we would be studying the scripture mastery scriptures in the Old Testament this year.  We started at the beginning, luckily, with a short scripture (Moses 1:39)  I look forward to using this resource (cards for the scripture mastery scriptures), something I used when I was in seminary in high school, to help explain context and meaning.  Also, there is this bookmark, which I believe is updated and recent with the new selections, which can help us keep track and provide brief summaries.  

The first night we introduce a new scripture we normally first all listen as Mom or Dad reads the scripture and then we all repeat it together.  We then, subsequent nights, each take a turn, with help, reciting the scripture or part of it.  After a time, we each have it memorized.  It is a very special experience to see one of your children recite a scripture by themselves and then look at you with expectation, a look of "did I get it right??" painted all over their face.  Then, there is the elation when they know they recited it correctly - the clapping by all (including the baby of course!) - and the next person's turn.  It's like a mini scripture celebration once each person has it memorized.  The happiness.  The accomplishment.  It's SO worth it!

I was so proud of my family for memorizing the 13 Articles of Faith.  I was surprised and proud that my young children, 5 and 3 when we started, have the ability to memorize these important pieces of doctrine.  They have shared them in their primary classes and when giving talks or scriptures in primary.  They also share their memorized scriptures during Family Home Evening.  It makes me happy knowing they will always have this knowledge.  Now we are able to add to it this year, studying selected scriptures from the Old Testament.

Plus, if we desire to stick with it, we not have scripture study planned out for 4 years.  When we finish the selected scriptures - and I hope we do! - we plan on reviewing the Articles of Faith again, to keep them fresh.  There is always going to be something to review.  I'm glad we have found a family scripture study method that works well for us and I'm grateful for the blessing we have felt as we have studied together.

1 comment:

Geevz said...

We have been working on articles of faith, but J hasn't really caught the vision. I know she could memorize it, she has whole books memorized, but she doesn't care about getting the lines in the right order. We have the illustrated scriptures, J picks a picture that she wants to read and John and I take the rest. It's been working for us so far, but I look forward to older kids and getting back to the regular scriptures.