I began copy work from the Holy Word when I was a young. I have journals full of scriptures throughout my years of copy work. I didn’t enjoy handwriting, but I knew in my heart that copying things down helped me remember them.
Owning a Bible (not mentioning reading a Bible) is illegal in many countries. When I visited Clay during his tour in South Korea, we took a trip to the DMZ (DeMilitarized Zone). As I stood looking into North Korea, I was overcome with emotional joy as I was reminded how blessed we truly are. Christianity makes up 30% of the population in South Korea. I could walk down the street carrying my Bible. I could read my Bible while riding the train, waiting on the bus, or eating lunch. As we entered the Joint Security Area, I was a little intimidated. Soldiers from both sides stood staring at each other. A line was painted on the floor separating the North from the South. I stepped across the line and was now standing in North Korea. I was now overcome with emotional despair. Bibles are not allowed in North Korea. Countless stories can be found of missionaries and North Korean citizens jailed or killed for their Christian faith. As I stood at the DMZ, our group was constantly being watched by a guard on the North Korean side. This guard was affectionately referred to as “Bob.” Bob would appear from behind a pillar, staring at us with binoculars, then suddenly disappear again. Any gesture made by anyone within our group could be mistaken as an insult and we could be attacked within moments. That led me to think about what is going on in the United States. What if it came to a point that Bibles were confiscated? Randy Alcorn talks about this in his book Safely Home. The book discusses people in other countries with limited access to the Bible. As the story continues, we learn that some areas may only have one copy of the Bible at the church. People would take turns passing around the Bible to copy scriptures.
As I’m writing this, I glance into our sunroom and gaze at the bookcases filled with many books. Included on those shelves are approximately 20 Bibles. I have Bibles from my childhood, some were gifted to me, some I received or purchased on special occasions, and I even have a Jewish and an Amish Bible! My kids own multiple Bibles, too. We are incredibly blessed here in the United States. We have access to a plethora of Bibles at churches and book stores. We even have electronic devices with pages of Bible apps that can link us up God’s Word at the touch of a finger.
What if all that changed?
The importance of copying Scripture is not so you have another copy of the Bible in the event this country takes a turn against Christianity (although it is a thought in the event our Bibles ever were confiscated), but writing scripture gives me a chance to sit down and spend time with God. It requires me to slow down in this fast paced world. Besides, what’s better than spending time with God, learning His Word and reflecting and applying His Word to my life. While we are writing, it gives us time to think and dwell upon the meaning of the Scripture and verses and gives us time to process what we are studying.
Statistically, it is proven that when we copy things down we remember them better. We write grocery lists, to-do lists, and lists of our lists. Why not write down what should be the most important thing to us – God’s Word?
Tips For Handcopying….
- Select your Passage(s). Decide which verses you would like to reflect on or spend time memorizing.
- Pick a Journal. Select a notebook or journal that will be strictly dedicated to your Scriptures.
- Environment. Find a quiet place that allows you to focus.
- Mental Preparedness. Take a deep breath and quiet your thoughts by praying for the Holy Spirit to reveal His truth to you in the scriptures and help you to focus on what you are studying.
- Begin Writing. As you begin to write, take time to focus on the verses one by one. Consider what they mean in their context.
- Don’t Rush. Remember this is a marathon, not a sprint. Take your time. While it is important to finish writing, your ultimate goal is spending time in the Word. I think of this time like reading a letter from Clay when he was deployed. I hung on every word and could not wait to read the next word. I never wanted that letter to read. Although I’m not comparing God’s Holy Word to Clay’s letter, I read the Bible the same way I read Clay’s letters. I savor every moment.
As parents, finding a quiet place can be challenging. However, can I encourage you to allow your children to see you writing the scriptures and studying God’s Word? Kids learn by example. This is why my kids keep Bible journals, read their daily devotionals and scriptures, write Scriptures, and also write in their Bibles. My boys have learned the importance of time with the Lord. I pray they continue to carry this skill into adulthood.
Won’t you join me starting this September and Write Through the Bible with me? I have also started a Facebook group HERE for us to discuss the scriptures or application of the scriptures if you would like. I also have a free printable HERE. My plan is to have a new set of scriptures each month.
Come join me and let’s learn about God’s Holy Word together! Click below for your printable schedule.