Upon The Doorpost

Repetition produces understanding.

That is why a musician practices for many, many- MANY- hours before they can call themselves a professional. Or why an athlete has to repeat the same movement over, and over, and over, in order just to be the most competitive they can be. Learning a language, or math, or any skill or knowledge area that requires memorization or improvement needs repetition, even if not for the purpose of competition.

So too does an understanding of God’s word.

Repetition produces understanding.

Do you want to know how to live in a way that shows the goodness of God? Do you want to show the love and mercy and justice of God to those around you? Do you need to eliminate the sinful habits of your life that you find destructive, that harm you and others? Do you want comfort and peace, and relaxation that comes from the Lord? Do you want to receive the blessing of joy from the Lord? Then you need to learn about Him through reading the Word of God (which is the Bible, for anyone reading this who is new to faith) and to talk with Him in prayer, so that you get to know Him better.

These two things teach you about God, and bring you closer to Him. They mold your perspective on things so that you can discover all the wonderful things that come with the joy and hope of the Lord. But you need to read and pray often, to stay close to God, to fill your mind with the things of Him so that sin, temptation and fears do not stifle your spiritual life. Routine reading and prayer is highly necessary, and it will produce the spiritual skills and disciplines to keep you close to God and far from the devil.

Repetition produces understanding.

We see this in Deuteronomy 6, where Moses tells Israel to keep the laws of God on their mind at all times. Moses tells them to write the laws on their clothes, on the doorstep to their houses, on the gates of their cities, to talk about it lying down and getting up, to talk about it as they walk along the way. Keep the laws of God on the mind at all times and obey them, Moses said to Israel, and God would bless them in return. We would benefit from keeping the word of God and all the good promises it holds for us on the mind as well.

If you had an angel following you everywhere you go, advising you, warning you, encouraging you, we would (as long as we listen) make better decisions! Learning, and then keeping the word of God on the mind always will have a similar effect. But learning the word and remembering it, and keeping it on our mind takes intention and takes effort. It is a thing we need to repeat constantly, if we want to see the benefits of that knowledge and wisdom.

Repetition produces understanding.

It might not be such a bad idea to put scripture all around us, on our doorways and walls and windowsills, in jewelry, on clothing, as decorations around the house or office. But more importantly, writing them on our hearts, and meditating on how they apply everywhere in our lives.

Jesus spent alone time with God to pray and meditate, shown in Mark 1. We need to do this too. When you learn that God watches over you and has all power in the universe to protect and provide for you, maybe you can feel peace through your own trials. When you learn that the forgiveness God gifts us calls us to show the same to others, and that God prefers peacemakers over those who avenge themselves upon those who have done them wrong, maybe you will feel more free to allow someone to have the last word over you. Maybe then, you will not feel like you are admitting defeat when you let a slight or an offense slide for the sake of forgiveness, for the restoration of the relationships that are broken. But to understand this, you need to be well-acquainted with God and His word, which means you need to spend much time talking to Him and reading The Bible.

Repetition produces understanding.

Therefore, let us all devote the time needed to grow closer to God and to better know His word. Let us stay close to God and stay immersed in His word, let His word fill our minds and lead us, and guide us to be His children and stewards of this lost world.