I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.Psalm 119:11 NIV
When I was a little girl, I remember gathering in our tiny living room as my younger sister and I did our best to recite the latest assigned Bible verses from our parents. And one of the earliest verses I learned was Psalm 119:11 from the King James Version: Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.
As a 5-year-old, I committed this verse to memory out of love and respect for my parents. I didn’t realize they were following God’s leadership and were actively laying a foundation in my heart of dependence on Christ and His word. In obedience to scripture, they accepted Deuteronomy 6:5-7 as a sacred trust: Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on 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.
While they couldn’t have known the specifics, my parents anticipated my life’s path littered with much joy as well as grief, difficult decisions, broken hearts, discouragement, and more. And even though they couldn’t shower their young family with the riches of this world, they bestowed a legacy of immeasurable worth and the absolute greatest treasure of all—the word of God.
Some Bible translations of Psalm 119:11 use the word, “treasured,” instead of, “hid” or “hidden.” This provides an image of something of great worth and value that we long to enfold in our inner selves, or our hearts.
Treasuring or hiding God’s word in our inner being goes far beyond simple memorization—though committing words to memory is a great place to begin. The living word of God is not for us to simply think fondly or emotionally about, like a family antique or heirloom, but a treasure of infinite value and substance that will transform our lives and equip us to live victoriously for Christ.
As an example, I have treasures handed down to me from my grandparents and parents, and I cherish the privilege of ownership. I protect each item and keep them safe from theft or abuse. But I haven’t hidden these earthly treasures in the deepest places of my heart. These items are unable to change me from the inside out, and to draw me closer to my Heavenly Father through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Only the words from our Creator God have the power to transform and renew from within.
Also, as we labor to build Christ-centered quivers, meditating over scripture and absorbing God’s wisdom into our minds and hearts has incredible benefits, far beyond the greatest benefit package ever offered on this earth. Even our Lord Jesus quoted scripture to fight Satan’s temptation in the desert (Matthew 4:4, 7, 10), and He is our ultimate example of righteous and faithful living!
When we hide God’s word in our hearts today, the Holy Spirit will bring these precious words to mind at the precise moment of our need.
When we hide God’s Word in our hearts today, the Holy Spirit will bring these precious words to mind at the precise moment of our need. #Scripture #Family #Parents @lthomaswritesTweet
Are we longing for peace and comfort in a difficult season? The words we poured over and treasured in Philippians 4:6-7 will spring to our thoughts and become a soothing balm over our spirits: Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
In times of great stress and anxiety, I have personally prayed and recited Isaiah 26:3: You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you. This scripture was tucked into my heart years ago, and is brought to mind by the Holy Spirit in His perfect timing.
Are we struggling with temptation? God’s word becomes a sword in the fiercest of battles (James 1:12, 1 Corinthians 10:13, Hebrews 4:15). And imagine how the following verses can make a difference in our war against sin:
Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.Ephesians 6:13
Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.Romans 12:21
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.Hebrews 12:1
Pouring over scripture together is a wonderful family experience. Even our tiniest littles can learn that God’s Word is a lamp for their feet (Psalm 119:105). And the life-giving words tucked into their hearts today will make a powerful difference throughout their life journeys.
Even our tiniest littles can learn that God’s Word is a lamp for their feet (Psalm 119:105). #Bible #Parents #Family @lthomaswritesTweet
Whether by scripture set to music, verses taped on the fridge and mirror, or studying with a friend or family member, there are exciting and creative ways to treasure the scriptures and to hide God’s word in our hearts. Setting aside time to ponder and pray over God’s love letter to us is the best stewardship of our inner lives. And the ongoing benefits of sweet communion with the Holy Spirit, peace in troubling times, and a mighty sword in the battle against sin, combine to provide a life-giving spiritual investment that will echo throughout eternity.
For fun and practical ways to bring the joy of God’s Word into your family routine, check out this article by Jeannie Waters: From Breakfast to Bedtime—Strategies for Teaching God’s Word to Children.