December 1, 2015

I have not failed; I just have not succeeded, yet.

That is my mantra for Romans 8. I have been endeavoring for three years to memorize all of Romans 8. While it has been slow going with lots of stops and re-starts, I am still at it. I have 15 verses down with only 24 to go. This may be a decade long process, which isn’t that bad of a prospect.

I read an article by Jon Bloom at Desiring God entitled Ten Reasons to Memorize Big Chunks of the Bible. The article reminded me of the goal I posted nearly three years ago. The ten reasons are all valid for my experience with Romans 8 so I thought I would re-blog my own post.
Everyone has areas where they do not excel. I don’t excel in memorizing big chunks of the Bible.

However, there is great benefit to enduring through less than success. We should not train only in the areas of our strengths. I made the goal of memorizing Romans 8 because I know that is a weakness. I picked this goal for the purpose of training for godliness and I probably have gotten more benefit from my slow, grinding application than the person who banged it out in a month.

So, I continue; I have not failed. I just haven’t succeeded, yet.


“Rather train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.” 1 Timothy 4:7b-8

I posted this flyer on my personal Facebook site yesterday, with the glib comment, “Anyone want to join me?”


Later that evening, I was suffering in my basement on my bicycle.  I was listening to a John Piper sermon on my iPod as I pedaled to nowhere.  His teaching turned my mind to 1 Timothy 4:7-8 and the immensely valuable task of training for godliness.  I was pedaling furiously doing the futile task of converting energy into friction/heat for the specific purpose of conditioning my body.  Yet, there is no aspect of training for godliness that has a comparable futility to it – training for godliness is of value in every way.

I considered why I had…

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One comment

  1. Thanks so much for this post. It applied directly to me in terms of my attempts to memorize all of Romans 8 over the years, but I recognize that in so many areas “I have not failed (although at times I think that I have), but I just have not succeeded yet.” Thanks for the encouraging words.

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