I bet if you’re reading this you either journal now or you did at one time in your life. Most of us who started on a journaling journey in our youth remember spending time recording all those heart wrenching events that had nowhere to go, but in our diary. There were days when that diary or journal became our best friend.
For Christians, your journal can still be that best friend. Certainly, many non-Christians see their journals as a confidant, but what can make Christian journaling unique is that we have a spiritual focus others do not.
Let’s look at what makes the Christian Journal distinct.
1. You are never alone: You might be writing by yourself, but God is always with you during whatever journey you’re recording and reflecting upon.
2. God’s Word: The Bible can provide you with the guidance you are seeking as you pour your heart out on the pages.
3. Record of Prayers: Journals are great tools to record our prayers and celebrate their progress. Many Christians are now journaling their prayers, and capturing the answers God is showing them.
4. Strengthens Your Relationship with God: Used wisely, your journal writing time can lead to significant growth in your relationship with God. Spending time writing out your prayers, feelings, gratitudes, or simply asking God for help keeps your mind focused on Him.
5. Strengthens Your Relationship with Others: With God as your guide, you can find answers about significant relationships in your life. Writing about important people in your life and sharing your feelings will help you reflect on how God wants you to handle those relationships.
6. Reflection on Scripture: If you are “wired” similar to me, writing out Scripture helps us study, remember, and reflect upon God’s Word much more completely than just by reading. Once you write out a Scripture you are examining on top of the journal page, the rest of the page (or, pages) can be used to explore your thoughts and dig into how God would want you to use His guidance in your life.
Please know that journaling is one way to grow spiritually, but certainly not the only way. However, a journal is a valued and useful adjunct to bible study and healthy Christian living.
Kathy Bornarth, principal at Hope Counseling Center in Chantilly, VA, has journaled for more than 25 years. She is a certified Journal to the Self® Instructor, teaches journaling workshops, and equips others to journal online at www.journaling4faith.com and www.nacjw.com.
For more information on spiritually focused journaling, please visit The National Association of Christian Journal Writers at www.nacjw.com. Members of the NACJW have access to practical training and resources that can be used personally, in their professional practice, and in small group settings. Membership is free!