Thursday, August 8, 2013

Why did you underline them?

What verses have you underlined or highlighted in your Bible? Look over a few and ask yourself why they are special to you. Why and how did they speak to your heart? During which event or era were those verses your delight? Or your instruction? Or your only hope?

Stories that go with those verses could provide good material for your memoir.

Recently I spent half an hour looking through an old Bible, the one I used from the mid-1980s through the early 1990s. Reading underlined passages sent me back to the ministries I had during those years, and to specific locales, and they reminded me of people and situations and heartaches and joys.

Reading them again also showed me God was always there in the midst, working out His best, whether or not I knew it at the time.

Below are a few verses from Genesis and Exodus that I found underlined. Perhaps in reading them you, too, will discover story ideas of your own.

Abraham was now old and well advanced in years, and the Lord had blessed him in every way. (Genesis 24:1)

All nations on earth will be blessed because Abraham obeyed me.… (Genesis 26:4-5)

God has made me fruitful in the land of my suffering. (Genesis 41:52)

You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done.… (Genesis 50:20)

I have seen the misery of my people.… I have heard them crying out.… I am concerned about their suffering.… I have come down to rescue them. (Exodus 3:7-8)

I have watched over you and have seen what has been done to you.… (Exodus 3:16)

When they heard that the Lord was concerned about them and had seen their misery, they bowed down and worshipped.  (Exodus 4:31)

Now you will see what I will do.… Then you will know that I am the Lord your God. (Exodus 6:1-7)

The Lord kept vigil that night.… (Exodus 12:42)

They were terrified and cried out to the Lord. (Exodus 14:10)

I will sing to the Lord,
            for he is highly exalted.…
The Lord is my strength and my song;
            he has become my salvation.
He is my God, and I will praise him. (Exodus 15:1-2)

I carried you on eagles’ wings and brought you to myself. (Exodus 19:4)

Moses approached the thick darkness where God was. (Exodus 20:21)

Do not spread false reports. Do not help a wicked man by being a malicious witness. Do not follow the crowd in doing wrong.… Do not pervert justice by siding with the crowd.… (Exodus 23:1-3)

Moses said to the Lord … “You have said, ‘I know you by name and you have found favor with me.’ If you are pleased with me, teach me your ways so I may know you and continue to find favor with you.” And the Lord said to Moses, “I will do the very thing you have asked, because I am pleased with you and I know you by name.”(Exodus 33:12-13, 17)

Everyone who was willing and whose heart moved him came and brought an offering to the Lord.… (Exodus 35:20)

Take a few days to go through your Bible and find old passages you cherish, verses that changed your life, passages you held onto in dark times, verses that made you fall down in worship. Then write your stories!


  1. Linda, I'm so glad to see you are still here. I've been 'away' from blogging for a bit. I'm starting to write, and memoir is where I'm leaning.

    I love this post. Such good things to keep in mind. So often they impact at the time of reading and then slip away. Good to be reminded from time to time. Thanks for the encouragement, Joyce

    1. Hi, Joyce, welcome back! Bless you for getting started on a memoir. Writing it will be hard work but oh-so-worth it, not only for yourself but for your readers. Take it one step at a time. Let me know if I can be of help.

      Blessings to you today,

  2. I had a friend who said you can learn an awful lot about a person by what verses they have marked. It's true. You can see what themes speak to them, etc.

    1. Hi, Lia, I've heard the same thing said, that we can learn so much about a person by what Bible verses he/she has marked. Old family Bibles are treasures! I've noticed, too, that Bibles I used at various times of my life have underlined passages that related to stories from that era. I'd love to sit down and write some of them. Discipline, discipline -- I need discipline!

      Thanks for stopping by, dear Lia.