When I first started reading books by Dallas Willard, I came across his statement that he believed memorizing scripture is more important than quiet time. I remember being a bit surprised, as I had been led to believe (through my reading and attending conferences/retreats) quiet time is the most important part of nurturing a relationship with God. I was also resistant to do this, as I wasn’t sure it could be done, especially as he suggested memorizing not just single verses, but whole passages, such as Romans 5:1-8 and 8:1-15, 1 Corinthians 13 and Colossians 3:1-17. But he said our minds are made for it, God wants us to do it and he will help us. I guess that removes the “I’m too old (or too whatever) to do that” excuse.
I must admit I haven’t put as much effort into memorizing scripture as I would like, but I have given it a shot. I started with Colossians 3:1-17 and have found it encouraging and edifying. It also helps me focus on my word for the year (crucified). The passage begins by telling us to set our hearts on things above, where Christ is. Then we are told to set our minds on things above as well.
In our world where so many things vie for our attention and affection, reminding ourselves through this passage of Colossians to set our hearts and minds on God seems to be the best way to hold our treasure in the right place. Through memorization, our minds will always be brought back to the right focus, which will enable our hearts to follow.