Early on in my Christian walk, I recognized how difficult it was to concentrate while praying quietly to myself. One minute, I’d be praying for persecuted believers and before I knew it, I would be planning a side dish for dinner. It was then I began journaling, over fifteen years ago. I suppose you could say frustration was the catalyst for my love of journaling.
One of my favorite take-a-minute-for-myself kind of books, “Interludes” by Linda Andersen, includes a chapter entitled “Jot in a Journal”. A few take-aways:
- Jotting thoughts and noting dreams can become a holy act even when our scribbles are on the plainest of paper; a small spiral notebook will do. But if you want to make this interlude really special, you will need a very special kind of book to journal in… one that is beautiful and reflects who you are.
- Your journal is a book written for your eyes alone. No other eyes need ever read what is recorded. It will be a place to bare your soul and reveal yourself to you and to your God. It will be a private forum of your unique concerns and brewing ideas and particular curiosities about ife and living; a place to pour out your thoughts and observations and opinions and feelings without censor or judgment.
- You have to be able, when you journal, to shed your skin of “musts” and “shoulds” and be wholly and completely yourself.
Journaling is a tool God has given us to record our prayers, deepest desires, strengths and weaknesses. Over time, you will see a beautiful journey unfold before your eyes… your journey. And above all, you will see the hand of God at work in your life and His steadfast faithfulness in all things. What begins as a prayer journal will indeed become your praise journal.
Join me in the coming days (after vacation!) as I share more insights from Linda’s book and personal thoughts on the subject.
Do you have insights to share on journaling? I’d love to hear them! I have so much to learn.
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