No doubt, memorizing the book of James while I am studying it helps me to retain it and apply it. The Word of God is living and active and you can't help but change inside and out if you spend enough time in it.
I could go on and on about each section I have studied or each verse I have memorized thus far. Every single word has impacted me in some way. Really it has.
But last week when I was studying James 4:11-12, it was like someone punched me in the stomach. I don't know about you, but it is easy for me to find myself on that slippery slope of judgment and justify it. After all, I was just sharing something that I felt. No I wasn't, I was judging plain and simple!
So God and I spent some time together on this. Him shining His light in the dark places of my soul where the pieces of judgment like to hang out. Me opening my heart to Him asking him to show me and convict me when my thoughts starting heading the wrong way.
Some amazing things began to happen immediately. First, I suddenly felt a freedom that I can't quite put into words. When we live according to the Word of God, we are truly free. He tells us so. But to feel the freedom is so, well, freeing.
Secondly, all those people and instances that I found to be so irritating, suddenly weren't. God softened my heart and opened my eyes to see differently. Perhaps the only irritating common denominator was me. You get the point.
I am so extremely grateful that we can rely on the Word of God to be and do all that it claims it is and will do. There is so much more to learn and to apply and yet God takes the little bit we read or study and uses it right then and there when we submit ourselves to Him.
May He open your eyes to see His word in a fresh and freeing way today.