Friday, January 22, 2010

"Yippee!" for Scripture Mastery

As I mentioned in a previous post, we do a lot with Scripture Mastery in seminary.  In our stake, we challenge the youth to memorize all 25 Scripture Mastery passages so they can be recited from memory.  It is not required, but the challenge is in place for those who seek to accomplish this.  Many youth have set a goal for themselves to memorize all 100 over the span of the 4 years in seminary.  At the end of each seminary year, any of the youth who have memorized 25 SM scriptures are awarded with a medal signifying their accomplishment.  If any seniors have memorized the 100 over the 4 years, they receive an added medal.

This is the way we have chosen, in our stake, to acknowledge students who have taken the time to put these important scriptures to memory, but we also recognize that not all students have the ability to do this.  It is just as important to be able to find/locate the scripture, understand the principles being taught, and to be able to apply the scripture in our lives.  The medals are nice, but the real reward is what I witnessed yesterday.  (I absolutely love when the work put into an effort produces a fruit that is sweet.)

One student expressed to me that she had amazingly recalled a SM scripture in a conversation to a friend who had asked her questions about the gospel.  Without realizing it, because she had taken the time to memorize it, she could recite it to herself in her head, and then rephrase it in a way that her friend would understand the principle.  Her face was beaming with  pride.

As I was cleaning up the seminary room yesterday, one young man stayed behind to mark off some SM scriptures he had memorized on a chart I keep in my closet.  As we were chatting, he mentioned how he first thought that memorizing scriptures from seminary was hard and that he never thought he'd ever use them. (He's a senior this year.) But lately he noticed that "they stick in your head" and he is able to recall them as he reads his scriptures.  He finds himself thinking about them and without knowing it, he's been able to understand the doctrine more fully.

As he's saying this, I'm thinking in my head, "YIPPEEEEEEEE"!   This is why we spend so much time on these scriptures.  This is the sweet and  delicious "fruit"! 

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