- It aids retention. Spending just those few extra seconds goes a long toward impressing those words in your memory.
- It helps you see the themes and topics in a passage. If I glance at a page with a lot of pink circles and shading I know that “comfort” is the focus of the passage.
- It helps you find the verses again. The visual clues make the search much easier.
- It encourages you on your journey. Seeing evidence of growth is always a boost.
1. Start small. Don’t start trying to mark every concept or key word in Scripture. It will stretch your reading time into an hours-long marathon and you’ll quickly lose steam. Plus you’ll forget what you’re marking and why. Choose a one or two ideas, or words – hope or healing for example – and mark them consistently. Next year or next time through the Bible, add a few more. My marking list has grown over ten or twelve years.
2. Use an index card or a bookmark or a blank page in your Bible to keep track of what you mark and how.
3. Colored ball point pens work great. I also like colored pencils, Crayola Twistables and Micron pens (they don’t bleed through). I keep a small plastic ruler in my Bible to keep my underlines straight, because I’m just that way.