As Becky watched her husband being handcuffed and placed in a police car, she wondered how her marriage would survive. Listen to her tell the story of how God met her in the darkest moment of her life and revealed Himself to her through Scripture.
Watch the video interview from the Bible Memory Goal YouTube channel:
Or you can listen to the Memorize What Matters podcast on your favorite player:Listen to “A Broken Marriage Meets Scripture Memory (w/ Becky Friberg)” on Spreaker.
Here are a couple of the resources mentioned in the interview:
Becky Friberg Inteview Transcript
Becky: We were married right out of college and I met my husband at the Christian college that we were attending together. We met in our common dorm area. We had a co ed dorm at a Christian school. I know that’s kind of wild, yes, but one side was the guys and once I was the girls.
And we met in the common area and he was He was the everyday watching sports and so I knew where to find him. And so any way, long story short, we got married, and um, probably about thirteen years into the marriage, we hit this huge trial.
And the truth is it really started way back before we were married with my husband, when he was younger, and so the while we’re dating in our early years of marriage, I would catch him in this struggle and he would always repent and say, I’m never going to do that again. And I always call it catch and release.
I’d catch him and release it. But then every time the struggle will get deeper and deeper, and as a struggle with pornography, and so just had a grip on him and it would just get deeper and deeper and deeper, and every time I would escalate further beyond where I ever ever imagined. And so to the point where we are facing just a huge child and um, totally unexpected, didn’t see it coming.
Josh: So yeah, so, I mean it all came really to a head. I’ve seen a video of of you explain this story, like can you share just that one day and kind of what happened a little bit.
Becky: Sure. I was actually finishing up a discipleship school program and this is part of the story because God used that program to supernaturally prepare me to walk into this trial. I thought I was going to this discipleship school program to be that are ministry, to have this huge speaking ministry. Maybe I don’t know, Like I was just excited to see what God was gonna do with it.
But oh no, God had a different plan, and he wanted to work on my heart first of all with him and was my relationship with him real. I’m a I’m a church kid, born and raised in the church. Gave my life to the Lord when I was eight years old. But I kind of just checking boxes through my life, like living the good girl, live Christian schools, all the things right, get married, have two kids, um, checking the boxes.
And so God used that time to really like make our relationship real and he’s like, Okay, I want to talk to you about your marriage. I was like, Nope, if he does this thing one more time, I’m gone. And that that’s where I was before this big trial happened.
So at the end of the discipleship school program, I was praying one morning, was a normal Wednesday morning, and I was following a prayer to pray for my husband, one of those guides it’s like pray for your husband guides. And so this was my prayer, but this is God because it said pray for your husband to be quick to agree with God in his sin.
Two hours later, a SWAT team showed upout our door to arrest my husband. And so that’s when the whole world was turned upside down for us. It was crazy. At the same time, there was such peace over that morning for me, and I think the officers probably thought it was a little bit weird because I kept talking about Jesus and like I was just like I knew what was going on. I just knew it. As as they asked more questions.
At first, I didn’t know why they’re praying up the door. I just didn’t put it together. But as they asked me more questions, I started to realize what was happening. I knew that God was using this moment to get my husband’s attention because he’d been running this whole time.
He’s a church kid to a pastor’s kid. Uh. I felt that called a ministry was like, no way, I don’t want to be poor. I don’t want to be in ministry wrestling with his own sins all this stuff right, So I knew I could see what God was doing. At the same time, Um, chaos was happening all around, like with my family, my friends, no one saw this coming. Was a complete shock to my whole world. And so it was peaceful.
At the same time, there was a lot of struggle in it, Like I knew what God was calling me to do from the very beginning. There was no like wrestling with it. I knew he was calling me to stand by my husband, and that’s just that’s just the grace of God.
Like that was not me at all at all. It was totally God leading me in that direction, because that’s that’s not always the case for all these kind of stories. That’s what God had me do in this moment.
Josh: So well, I mean, I think part of the story that I remember you telling earlier was and and to you know, just for clarity, it sounds like that you know what the SWAT team was therefore was related to the porn addiction, and so obviously that as a wife, would you know that that’s hurt? Right? And yet I remember you telling the story and as he’s driving away, apparently you you said something to him, right?
Becky: Well, I said, I don’t know which part. It’s been a while since I’ve seen the video, but um, I walked out. My parents lived next door. Another a grace of God that my parents lived next door, and they were the boys were young, aren’t we have two young boys we have they’re not young now, but they were young at the time, and I was able to take them next door to my parents house.
While this whole thing was going down, And I walked outside of my parents house and they are putting my husband in the car with his hands behind his back, and he looks at He’s like, I’m being arrested, and I’m like, I see that, and they drove off. But I didn’t say it to him at the time, but I knew that I was gonna I was gonna be there no matter what it was. He didn’t know that though, he had no idea where I was at with everything, So I don’t I thought someone you’re referring to.
Josh: But well, according to him in the video, I believe he was. He was, you know, getting put in there, and you shouted out to him, I love you.
Becky: I did say that, and yeah.
Josh: I mean I can as a husband, I can feel, you know, knowing the shame that I’ve just now brought on my family and the hurt that I am probably just pouring in buckets on my wife. And then to hear you say I love you as I’m driving away, Um, I can’t even imagine what that meant to him.
Becky: Yeah, and he’s one of those things. It was just he sees it. Two is just like this grace of God, like God was just working in it, like it was so supernatural because I had every reason to leave. I had every reason at that moment to be like, nope, I’m out.
Like my friends, my family, a lot of people were saying, you know this is you need to leave, And I was like, I don’t I know what God’s calling me to do. So yeah, so just before we start diving into other stuff, just because I think this is really important.
Josh: So now, how long have you guys been married? What are you celebrating now?
Becky: Next year we will be celebrating twenty five years, so we’re getting close to that quarter century mark. We are super excited. Our marriage is better than it ever was. Like it started out just kind of us. We always like, there’s this tree that we see often and reminds us of our marriage, and it just kind of started out like this, like we were just going opposite directions. It was the perfect storm.
I was super busy in my career, coaching, cheer, involved in church, like doing all the good things, right, but then my husband’s over here go in this direction. It was just the perfect storm. And so um now though it is better than ever. We are so happy together. We’re just thriving. We’re doing really well. So that’s just God.
That’s what my husband went through and he went to prison for three years and now he’s back. It’s it’s very difficult to get jobs in that situation, but God has provided in amazing ways for him to have this brand new career and he’s just doing really well in it. So we are. It’s great.
We are so thankful to God. That’s where we are.
Josh: Yeah, that’s really cool. Well, so now let’s take a step back and I’d love to, you know, just kind of learn from you. Like you’ve got three years now without your husband, who’s who’s in prison? Like how is God speaking you two through his word? And is is that the time when you really started to feel like an authenticity as you’re reading the Word?
And and that’s where kind of okay, now you want to memorize scripture because I mean, you grew up in the church so you’ve done in the past, but like, what’s happening during that period?
Becky: Yeah, absolutely good question. Um. So, yes, I’m a church kid. I’ve grown up singing all the him singing all the praise songs. I’ve been in worship ministry for years and so but it’s just something that I did.
And so when you face a trial like this, all those songs and choruses, hymns, you sing things like Um Savior, you can move the mountains like those all all of a sudden makes sense when before they didn’t have that depth of meaning.
But when you go through a trial, and Paul talks about this a lot of his letters about going through trials and it it uh, it refines your faith. And I just really experienced that in a huge way, and seeing those songs come alive.
And then with scripture memory, I’ve always done Bible studies again church kid, I’ve gone gone to so many women’s Bible studies. I lead them now. So it’s always been a part of my life. But man like, when that trial happened, that I was able to go so much deeper in scripture and with the Lord.
And so I was thinking through when did I start really memorizing scripture for reels. I mean, I’ve done it my whole life because I’ve had to school, um, you know, to earn the grade. But I was in a Bible study. My husband had been home at this point, you know, after the prison years.
He’d been home for about a year, and I was really struggling. I was struggling. I thought I’d be okay with him coming home and me providing for the family and him being home with the kids. I was not okay with that.
Like, I was struggling to the point where I went to go see some therapists and stuff and they diagnosed me with a depression and anxiety and stuff like that. And I’m looking at this diagnosis like that’s not me, Like that’s not me. I was really struggling with it.
And shortly after that, I started a Bible study at my at my church and other women’s study and it was second Timothy. And again I’m struggling with having to go to work day. I’m crying every day going to work. I just wanted to be home with the kids. And it was it was just hard. It was a hard transition. Him coming home after three years.
God in his Grace had this study lined up for me, and I just threw myself into the study. And part of the study was level one, just show up and do the workbook. Okay, that’s level one. Level two, do the workbook, do the homework, and then show up and watch the videos. Okay. Level three is write it all out. And level five was do all the things and memorize Second Timothy.
And I’m an all in kind of girl. And so when I started running, it wasn’t a 5K, it was a marathon. I’m like, I’m going for the marathon right away. So I’m like, I’m going to memorize the book of 2nd Timothy. And so I would be studying the book and memorizing at the same time working full time out of the home. Um, I’m not going to work from home.
At the time, I was working in a corporate job. I had to go every day and I would spend my lunch hour, I would spend my commute just really memorizing and meditating on Scripture. And I just use that to to move in my heart and just urge me and um bring me out of that depression and anxiety in a way that I didn’t even expect it because I was just like, I’m gonna learn this scripture. I’m gonna be all in.
And so that was the very first book I memorized. I fell in love with the process of studying and memorizing. And then shortly after that, I was able to leave that job and I was able to start working from home. So it doesn’t I’m not saying that led to that, but it was just kind of let me through that tough season of really struggling through that the depression and anxiety and just filling myself with God’s word in a new way. It was just amazing.
And so now I’m just like a huge fan. I try to tell everybody to memorize God’s word study memorize at the same time. It’s just amazing. So yeah, yeah, I do feel like there’s an added depth that comes with any uh study of the Bible that you do that when you’re simultaneously memorizing that that text.
Josh: You know, Like I remember when our our house church was going to be going through Galatians and I was like, great, so I’m gonna memorize Galatians while we’re going through it, and um, yeah, it just added Like I said, a whole new depth. I really enjoyed with that.
Becky: Yeah, me too. And then now that I teach a discipleship school, Um, we just taught first and second Peter, I have those memorized and just the ads to the teaching too. To be able to like just jump in and be able to say it, you know, to be right there in the scripture without having to look it just adds a whole new Like I said, depth to study antiaching so exactly,.
Josh: Going back to your your story and where I relate to that. As you know, I’ve had my own big event in my life and I remember before that, you know, as I memorized Psalm 46 is something that I think most of us have at least heard, you know, be still and know that I Am God all of these things. Um. But again, when when it’s when you’re going through the midst of those kind of things, the silver lining, if you want to call it, that is sometimes the ability to see the beauty of scripture and what God is saying to you.
Because for me, I remember like super stressing out over you know, our situation in China where we were being held and all these things and the idea to be still. It’s easy to be still when you’re like sitting in a church service, singing, you know, worship songs and that, you know, worship pastors like, hey, you know Psalm forty six says be still, so we’re just gonna, you know, we’re gonna be still for a moment.
Like, hey, well, well that’s really easy. But when chaos is like swirling around you, you know in some forty six, when mountains are falling into the sea, when waters are roaring and foaming, and then God says be still, that takes on just a whole different meaning. And uh and I like how you said that where it’s like, okay, you know when I sing these songs now, like those words mean something more to me. And when I say these word these you know, passages of Scripture, it means even more to me having gone through what I’ve gone through.
Becky: Yeah, absolutely, even like twelve years later and we’re way on the other side of it now, those songs come back, they’re like, you know, throwback worship songs. But I’m like, oh, I just remember what that meant at that time. Because I would drive around um Sandeoe County where we live, because I just that’s the way I process things.
So I spent time with the Lord. When I drive around, I would drive down to the beach and there’s this off I still go visit sometimes off the Sunset cliffs. It’s just beautiful, and I would spend so much time They’re just praying and meditating on God’s word.
And so that that location, those songs still means so much to me to this day, um, because God just used them to speak in my life during that time.
Josh: So yeah, well, Becky, you have been like just a super encouraging part of our Bible memory community. And I want to just say that in front of everybody who’s watching listening, that you know, I appreciate everything that you’ve contributed to the community.
And what I would like to do is to ask you, like you’re for practically speaking right, because we all do it differently. I want to know how is it that you approach scripture memory and when you’re when you were memorizing second Timothy, have you changed your method from when you did it then to what you’re doing now And what exactly are you doing now when you’re putting new you know, new verses in your brain.
Becky: That’s such a great question. So I still really valued memorizing whole books. I went through a season where I tried memorizing, like uh, scriptures here and there, which is very valuable for for me. I just love the whole book process and I am I think it’s called wrote memory where I create cards and I just used the cards I learned.
I mean like five verses a day. I can do maybe a chapter in a week, but I’ll just say it over and over again, and I write it out by hand. And I was just telling my class recently that second Timothy I learned six years ago and I still know it the best because it’s the only one I wrote out consistently from memory every day, like on my lunch breaks at work, I would just write it out and so that that I’m sure there’s studies on it, Like if you write out things like you can remember it, right, is there something about that?
Josh: Well, when you’re when you’re using multiple senses, right, not just your you know what you see, but now your tactile, you’re moving your hand, yeah, combining all those together exactly.
Becky: Yeah. So I would write it, I would copy it, and i’d also write it from memory, and then on my lunch breaks, I would have the cards. I would walk around the harbor. Um. I worked at a hotel downtown San Diego, and so I’d walk around the harbor, and to day I still relate certain parts of Second Timothy to that harbor walk because that’s where I memorized it.
It’s so crazy how the brain works that way. Um. I don’t do that process anymore. Mainly it’s a I have my cards, actually have some right here. I’ll show you guys, um cards like I just I just print them out, like and make them myself as first Peter, and I just flipped through them and write out. So I guess that’s rote, right. You just kind of keep saying it it’s your version of wrote, but yeah, yeah.
And then I added a good Bible memory app. I also used the Versus app, and I used the type out feature where you can just type out the first letter of each word and you can type out the whole passage that you’re working on. So that’s been helpful too.
Josh: That is really neat. So when you’re writing it out, like, do you have a notebook just full of all the times that you’ve written out Second Timothy or did you just write it and throw it away?
Becky: I wrote it and throw it away through it away. I have the worst handwriting in the world, Like nobody would be able to even read it. Like, I just it’s kind of chicken scratch. I know what it says. Um, But yeah, I just I would I use legal pads and I’ll just rip them out and throw it, throw it away.
That would be cool, though, to stay at all it would have been. It sounds like it would have been a thick notebook, right. It was full of the same text. I didn’t all the time. It was just the way I feeled my lunch breaks. It’s like on commutes, I still do this. I drive have I’m on Sacco a church that’s thirty minutes away from me, and so I spend that time.
I will get in the car and I’ll recite as much as I can remember. I’m not using the cards while I’m driving, but i will recite as much as I can remember, and then I’ll get to your location. I’ll kind of check real quick on the cards to see how I did, and then I move on with my day. So I try to find a way to weave it into things are already doing.
Josh: So, yeah, that’s really cool. Yeah it sounds I mean, so you’ve got obviously it is a rote memory method that it sounds like you’re using a little bit of you know, especially if you’re writing it out to start as you’re memorizing it.
But the way that you’re reviewing your Bible memory is a combination of uh, you know, writing it cards and um and an app Does that sound about That sounds about right?
Becky: Yeah, I literally consistent for the other. But I’m getting ready to I learned ten books that way. So I did ten books. They’re all letters. Um, I love Paul, so most of them are Paul’s letters. I’m getting to do Romans, another Paul letter. But I’m gonna be studying Romans in seminary and then I’m going to I want to memorize moments.
So it’s gonna be like the first time I’ve memorized a book in probably a few years. It’s just an all review for the past few years. I’m excited for a new project. Yeah, and that that’s uh, that’s it’s going to have its own channel, the Channel six. Yeah.
Josh: Yeah, that’s great. That’s awesome. Well what would you say? I mean, you you do have students that you you know, you mentor and teach, Like, what are what are the big things that you I don’t know, like any pieces of advice or wisdom that you find yourself sharing continually with these students that you think other people would benefit from.
Becky: Absolutely, that’s a great question too. So with my students, they have to memorize. They have a memory quiz every week, so they’re in a position where they have to do it. So the first one today is you have to want if you they’ll say, oh, how do you memorize scripture? I want to do them?
Do you really want to? Like you want? You have to want to do this, you know you have to secure that. Why, like why do you want memorize scripture? Like with any goal when you want to work out, Like why do you want to work out? It’s not if you don’t have that strong why, it’s not gonna keep you going through the challenges when you don’t feel like working out, when you don’t feel like taking the cards out and memorizing whatever whatever your process is.
And so that why, like why do you want to spend some time in scripture and see what God’s word says about hiding his word in our hearts?
There’s so many passages that talk about meditating on Scripture, but the Bible doesn’t explicitly say we have to memorize. But there’s those ones that talk about the importance of having his word hidden in our heart, and so I mean it. Psalms 119:11 is my favorite about I have your words hint in my heart, so may not sin against you and so um those are the ones that drive me um personally.
Also first Peter, I don’t know the exact location because I don’t memorize numbers UM, but he says, if anyone speaks talking about gifts to the church, and if anyone speaks, it should be as someone who speaks God’s word.
And to me, that really spoke out as someone who is a communicator. I don’t want to speak my words. I want to speak His words, and what better way than to like memorize as many of his words as I can. So that’s what motivates me. And it’s like tell my my class is that you have to want it, and then you need to schedule the time to do it, like when in your whin in your life.
Like for me, I said, maybe half an hour to an hour a day memorizing scripture. That’s just where I’m at, But maybe for them it’s ten minutes like and where’s that ten it’s gonna be It’s gonna be after you have your coffee. Is it gonna be after you do your workout? Is it gonna be um on a walk? Like? Be specific with your goal setting, like I plan to memorize this chapter on at six o’clock every morning by doing this, like being very specific on how they’re going to do it.
So there’s my top two ones. Your why and being very specific on how you’re going to reach that goal.