Bible memorization contest draws unenthusiastic response
Pastor Wanna Noe Bible felt his church needed a deeper knowledge of God’s Word, so he decided to implement a month-long contest to test the congregation’s desire to memorize Bible verses.
Pastor Bible promoted the contest for about one month. He announced the project on the church‘s Web site, purchased newspaper advertising, and ran announcements in the church’s weekly bulletin.
Although response from the pre-contest publicity was dismal, Pastor Bible was not upset. “I realize people deal with many things on a day-to-day basis,” he told his wife, Mrs. Bible. “And I’m sure the folks realize the importance of knowing God’s Word.”
Members of the congregation were asked to approach the pastor and volunteer for the project. Two weeks into the project, however, no one had contacted him, so the pastor decided to again appeal for participation.
“This will give you an opportunity to memorize the Word of God, and you’ll be a much more effective witness for the Lord,” he said.
The following Sunday, the pastor called for a special meeting to be held in the church’s fellowship hall after the morning worship service. He asked why no one in the congregation had responded to the call for Scripture memorization.
“I’ve been so busy at work,” said Bonnie. “I’ve had to work overtime every single day for the past month.”
“My time has been spent planning our family vacation,” said Buster. “I’m trying to make sure we get the best prices on motel rooms and restaurant discounts. Plus, I’ve checked the price of gasoline every day on the Internet. And I’ve also been working very hard on my job.”
“I’m in the process of starting a new business, and I’m trying to make sure I have all the proper licenses, select a good location and stock my new store with a great variety of merchandise,” said Bowman.
Pastor Wanna Noe Bible was discouraged by the reasons given by the members for not memorizing Bible verses. “I wish they would realize the importance of hiding God’s Word away in their hearts,” he thought.
To the members of the church, the pastor said, “We still have one more week in the contest. I urge you to learn as many Bible verses as you can in the next seven days.”
The last Sunday in the contest arrived, and the pastor planned to announce that no Bible verses had been memorized. As he stood to make the announcement, Barbara raised her hand to get the pastor’s attention.
“I memorized one verse,” Barbara said.
“What verse did you memorize?,” asked the pastor.
“John 11:35,” replied Barbara. “The reason it took me so long to memorize the verse was because it was so short that I almost didn’t find it!”
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Published on e-Stories.org on 06/09/2010.