I visited an elderly church member in the hospital last week. I got a birthday card for her son, since she hadn’t missed one in 60 years, and didn’t want to ruin that streack. ‘ Since she couldn’t write, I filled in a few words and then offered to put a bible reference.
“Do you have any particular one you would like me to write down,” I asked.
So I reached for my pocket PC (which housed my electronic bible) to get a reference appropriate to the situation, but my reach was all for naught.
But before I continue, I must say there were some noticeable anachronistic ironies at play. First of all, I was breaking out a fairly high tec gadget in front of someone who probably hadn’t been on the internet before. Secondly, I was using that high tec gadget to read from something so ancient, yet always remains relevant-unlike my pocket PC which is already behind the times: many phones can do more than I can. Sorry for that ‘aside.’
Now back to the story. I was interuppted with the words “Psalm 23.” Then she continued her interruption with the words from Psalm 23: “The Lord is my shepherd……..”All of the words.
I think that day she ministered every bit as much to me, as I did to her, and perhaps more.
She taught me two things that afternoon:
1.) Memorize-If we memorize the words of scripture, we have truly ‘hidden’ God’s Word in our hearts (Psalm 119), and we’ll have it at our disposal throughout the day. What else will sustain us when visitors are few and far between, and the hospital room smells like cabbage (although its been a while since I smelled cabbage, but I know it smells bad, and so do hospitals)? God’s Word, hidden in our hearts. Even when we don’t have the power to turn the pages of the bible, it’s still there.
2.) Start ‘Em Young-I asked her when she had memorized this Psalm. She answered, “When I was a little girl in bible school.” What an effect it had on her. VBS memorization really does make a difference. It’s never too early for baby food, and it’s never too early to memorize scripture. But then again, it’s never too late either. Can’t let us off the hook, eh?