“A Scripture Bee?”
Our translator in Kherson, Ukraine, was attempting to describe the wishes of the women’s conference leader. The best our mission team could figure out was that she wanted to hold the Scripture equivalent of a spelling bee.
And so we did. Twenty or so Ukrainian women lined up at the front of the church and begin to quote Scripture verses from memory. When one of the ladies either could not recite another verse, or repeated one already spoken, she had to sit down.
On and on it went. And on and on and on it went…and went and went. One lady was flagged down by the others when it seemed she was going to recite Psalm 1…. through 150!
A tie was finally declared because the two women still standing apparently had the entire Bible memorized!
Our mission team debriefed from that experience late in the evening. We determined that if we competed in a Scripture Bee, it would be a brief contest.
Our Ukrainian friends hold God’s Word as incredibly precious. Many of the believers put their lives on the line for their faith when their country was under communist rule. It was not long ago that an entire village had to share a single copy of the Bible.
They have not forgotten. And so to them the Word of God is vibrant and powerful. It flows naturally from both their lips and their lives.
Surely that’s what God has in mind for all of us. Deuteronomy 6:6-8 says, These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.
This passage describes the Word of God—deep within us, and completely surrounding us.
So what might Deuteronomy 6:6-8 “look like” in the year 2010? Here are a few possibilities:
- “Text” Scripture verses. I have a friend who texts me a Bible verse every morning. When my cell phone vibrated this morning, I opened it to Psalm 55:22.
- Another friend posts a “Word of the Day” from the Bible on her facebook page each morning.
- Friends Michael and Gail have a Scripture verse written on the wall over their fireplace. Its message is central to both their home and their hearts.
- Use Scripture references as your computer password. Usually a password needs to have upper and lower case letters, numbers and/or symbols, so a Scripture reference is perfect. I’ve started using Romans 828. Now when I sit down at my computer, no matter how challenging a day I’m having, I can’t help but be reminded that “God works all things together for my good…”
- Stuck in traffic? See how many Scriptures you and those along for the ride can quote alphabetically: “All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God,” “Bear one another’s burdens and so fulfill the law of Christ,” “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.”
- Personalize Scripture by inserting your name or the name of a loved one: “For God so loved Sherry that he gave….”
- Hold a “Pizza and Parables” party with your family or friends. Gather in groups and come up with creative ways to express the truths of a parable. Then talk about what you learned while munching pizza.
- Singing God’s Word is a wonderful way to hide it in your heart. Fall asleep listening to Scripture songs.
- Learn Scripture by beat. Follow this link to view an example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WBH_pIa4fRY
I doubt I’ll ever win a Scripture Bee, but when God’s Word is all around and deep within me, I have a much better chance of walking in victory every day.
Update: Read about Kim Jackson's 2012 ministry: Elder Orphan Care
Kim Jackson is a founding member of Crossroads Communicators. She is currently leading the Vintage Class on a Creative Heart of God adventure. In September she’ll be traveling with a Crossroads missions team to serve in Budapest, Hungary. Visit www.kimmunicator.com to read about some of her other adventures. If you’d like to view a 2-minute video clip of the Ukrainian Scripture Bee, click on U.S.Bee.
Originally posted as part of a Scripture reading schedule:
Week 10--March 7-13
Scripture Reading: Deuteronomy 6 – 26; Psalm 33-36