The value of writing the Scriptures in longhand

Do you have a shortcoming that hinders you from getting things done — from being as effective as you could be?

Mine is perfectionism.

It’s a recurring theme for this blog, even when you’re not reading about it. (It’s often why you’re not reading the blog at all — because I haven’t posted!)

My goal is to publish a post every weekend, consistently. My No. 1 hindrance — even more than the health problems that keep me tired all the time — is perfectionism.

If you’re a blogger, you understand all the steps that go into publishing a decent post. It’s more than just writing the words; it’s editing, creating and checking links, producing nice images (including finding or taking photos or creating graphics, cropping and sizing them correctly), publishing the post, pushing it out to social media, writing an email to let your subscribers know about it … and don’t get me started on SEO. (If you don’t know what that is, you’re probably better off!). I have given up on the idea of search-engine optimization … at least for now. It’s a low priority. Also, if I were a fancy blogger, I’d use professional-looking pictures every time. Some websites are unbelievably beautiful. I want mine to be believably about Jesus and his grace and mercy for us. 🙂 So I often take pics of my handwritten cards, notes and pages, and sometimes I even post them on Instagram, LOL!

My goal with this website is to help you.

I want to encourage you, inspire you and spur you to action. I want to help you KNOW GOD. And not just “know” God, but to really dig deep and have a relationship with him that helps you navigate life and help others do the same.

My aim is to make the Lord’s name great and to take you along for the ride. I want us to share our faith with love and respect, no matter whom we’re talking to.

We’re learning together here. I’m studying Christian apologetics, and it has been fascinating so far. I’m hearing terms and concepts I had never paid attention to before.

But all that sharing and blogging comes wrapped up in perfectionism, which tends to drag me down and keep me from doing … anything.

I’ve been working behind the scenes, though just not publishing.

So when I find something that calms me down — that allows me to pull back, slow the spinning plates and just sit and contemplate for a few minutes — I grab hold. And then I want to share it.

I’ve followed a woman named Arabah Joy for a year or so, and she recently offered her Love the Word Bible Study Binder at the low cost of … FREE … and I grabbed it. (The free offer has expired, but here’s the link in case you’d like to buy the 66-page download for $27.)

It includes pages for writing Scriptures, and this is something I’ve wanted to do for a while.

Also, I looooove writing longhand. I’ve always enjoyed writing of all kinds, and in the past couple of years I’ve been reminded of how I enjoy not only keyboard typing but simply getting back to the basics and writing things longhand. Handwriting uses a different part of your brain, the scientists say.

(Jury’s still out on whether I’m a paper-planner girl or a digital-planner geek. I think I’m a hybrid — I enjoy and see value in both methods.)

So, if you’re struggling with perfectionism, a busy schedule, a brain that goes in a hundred-thousand directions all the time, or any other issue that’s making you cray-cray, consider writing out some Scriptures.

Then sit and contemplate them and pray over them.

Here are a couple of my faves to start with:

2 Chronicles 16:9 (NIV) — “For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.”

James 1:2-5 (NIV) — “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.”

Write these on whatever you have — it doesn’t have to be fancy paper or colored index cards. You see from the first photo that I scrounged around and found some colored notebook paper. I’ve had the paper for years, and I’ve had the colored index cards for years. Don’t go out and buy something.

JUST START.

I included a set of my favorite writing tools in the first photo because I enjoy writing with these markers (using them actually slows me down and helps me contemplate what I’m writing), but a plain ol’ pencil or regular ink pen will do. (If you do want these markers, here is an Amazon link to my idea list where I recently started list of my favorite office supplies. I’m not an Amazon affiliate, so I don’t make any money off your clicks or purchases.)

Also notice that I chose not to start over when I messed up; I decided to scratch it out and keep going. I gave myself a bonus point for letting that go; the message is more important than how pretty and “perfect” it is.

Have the handwritin’ of a serial killer? No problem.

TYPE IT OUT. I love me some copy-and-paste, but this is not the time for that.

In the above passage from James 1, instead of copying and pasting from the website I linked to for you, I retyped it. I have it memorized in a different translation, so I did have to check my notes a couple of times, but writing it — whether by hand or by keyboard — helps you remember and internalize the words, and especially the message.

Have I inspired you to give it a try? Leave a comment or, if you’re on my email list, reply to the one I’ve sent you about this post. I’d love it if you’d include a picture of your handwritten verses.

P.S. I’ve had another brainstorm since I wrote this post, so be sure to check back later in the week for that announcement (hint: #ScriptureMemorization). Subscribers will hear about it first, so be sure to fill out your name and email address in the box at right [probably at the bottom if you’re on mobile] to get updates. 🙂

Blessings,

SuzyOakleySignature

Posted by Suzy Taylor Oakley, writer • editor

Writer, editor, blogger. I love books, baseball, Bruce and Jesus, not necessarily in that order.
  • Tammy Henry says:

    Enjoyed your writing. I enjoy writing Bible verses too!!

    • Suzy Taylor Oakley, writer • editor says:

      Thanks, Tammy! If you’re into memorization, you might want to join my little project that I’m cooking up. (It’s VERY little – more about accountability than a full-blown program.) I’ll be writing about it in the next post.

  • Phyllis Russell says:

    I love writing scripture & listing what I find out about God & myself. I also noticed I’m not the only one who sometimes prints a word and uses cursive for others. I thought something was wrong with me. 😂. Enjoying your writings.

    • Suzy Taylor Oakley, writer • editor says:

      Phyllis, I know that you spend a lot of time in the Word, and I’d love to hear some of your tips for gleaning insights from your lists. As for the cursive and printing, I hadn’t really thought about it, but I guess I do mix it up, LOL! Thanks for stopping by to comment.

  • Trina says:

    ❤️ you do such excellent work!

    • Suzy Taylor Oakley, writer • editor says:

      Awww, thanks, friend! I enjoy your posts, too! Maybe you’ll want to join the little memorization project I’m going to start soon. 🙂