Joy In Journaling The Word
I used to think that journaling was all about entries like Dear Diary today Johnny sat by me in math class! But thankfully that is not what it is about friends. Oh, it is about so much more than that.
A dear friend of mine shared with me many years ago the joy of journaling. I remember her saying to me: Andrea, you just have to write what impresses you. Write the thought behind the feeling. Learn the Word. Journaling can be a great tool for seeking.
Since then I have written my way through roughly 50+ journals. I have filled them with heart cries, broken prayers, dreams, fears, words of truth, and so much more. Not once have I had to explain myself, check my spelling, or worry if the words written down would find there way onto social media. No, there is freedom in journaling.
Journaling is not for others, it is for you. Journaling is for your own need. To process. To understand. It is a safe place for you to learn and to question. It is a place where you can explore what your heart is feeling and make sense of what you are reading.
Not always does journaling come easy. No. Some days it is hard fought to win the battle of your heart and write out where you are. For me I have to start somewhere, and that is where I want to start with you. There are many different ways to do journaling, while we will not explore all of them here we will look at one way – journaling the Word.
My family and friends know this about me, but I want to share this with you too. I am a journal snob. It’s true, I am a journal snob. Let me explain: I love journaling, but I am also super picky about the journal I write in. I have to love the journal I use. I mean come on, it is a huge commitment. You will travel with this journal for months, or weeks depending the length of pages, and you will be pouring out your heart, learning new things, having revelation after revelation basically this journal will become a part of you. So yes, I am a snob. With that being said, when you start on this journey of joy in journaling, make sure to pick out one you will love! I am a huge fan of Moleskine journals.
Once you settle on your journal of choice, it is so okay to have more than one, I have found some amazing ones at Marshalls and Barnes and Nobles, you have to begin the process of writing.
For a lot of us, writing is not a joy. We have visions of english class and those essays that took our breath away, and now sitting with a journal in front of us we just go blank! Well, friends, you are not alone and don’t be afraid, I may have just the solution for you!
*Let me just say, I don’t write in my journal for the sake of writing. No, I write with purpose, so I can only share from my own experience. So here we go!
With your journal open in front of you, grab your bible and open it to the passage you are looking into. Write out the address you are investigating, and read the passage. As you read, note any words that stick out to you. Think about the passage and what the emotions are behind it. Reflect on what these words share with you about God and about you. Write out the words that stuck out to you, along with anything you are wanting to reflect on. It’s that easy!
Why don’t we walk through a passage together to get a better look at this.
Open your bible to 1 John 4:13-21
Read through the passage. Remember to note any words that stick out to you. Maybe circle love every time you see it or abide each time you see it. What word stood out to you?
In your Word journal write out the address for what you are reading, maybe draw a box around it or circle it. Now you can write out the words that drew your attention. Take a minute to reflect on why you connected with those words. Keep processing out what you are thinking.
Read the passage again- looking at how the passage makes you feel. How do you connect with these verses?
Write out what you are finding. Don’t stress about the amount you are writing out, it may be one word, it may be two hundred. Just get it on paper what you are finding.
Focus in on one verse. Which one has just hit you between the eyes? Why did it connect with you, what is God saying in this, and how can you apply it to your life?
As you draw to a close with your journaling move into a time of prayer. End your journal entry by asking God to help you apply what you have learned. Make it real and from your heart. Take the time to draw near to God, because that is the whole point of all of this. We want to draw near, to seek, to find the King of Kings in the midst of our crazy days and lives.
Journaling can be a great tool in our lives as we learn to seek after God. Journaling is a great part of my walk with Jesus. I find that when we journal through the Word we not only get the reading in our hearts, but when we write it out we get the Word written on our minds as well. That way when you are in need of a refreshing truth you can open your journal and BOOM! you have it right there for you to look at and see the exact scripture you were diving into.
I have more than one journal that I use on a daily basis. I have one for life- where I track my journey, one for the Word, and one for prayer. In our next digging in session we will talk about journaling prayer.
Until then friends!
Some tips for you:
- Box around the addresses of the scripture you are journaling. Sometimes we can get going, lost in thought and we forget where we were writing from.
- Always end your journaling time with some application. Apply what you just read to your own life, however you see fit but make sure that you spend a few minutes to reflect on the Word.