My counsel for you is simple and straightforward: Just go ahead with what you’ve been given. You received Christ Jesus, the Master; now live him. You’re deeply rooted in him. You’re well constructed upon him. You know your way around the faith. Now do what you’ve been taught. School’s out; quit studying the subject and start living it! And let your living spill over into thanksgiving. (Colossians 2:6-7 The Message)
On a monthly basis, a group of tender hearted women meet after church. We journal in community. Our faithful mentor, Mary Ann, asks God for a prompt or devotion to prime our conversation with God and each other. Each time we meet, we marvel at how God tailors the topic to our current needs.
Today was no different. Mary Ann pulled out photocopies of an article from her Insights for Living newsletter. Chuck Swindoll reflected on “What Journaling Can Do For You.” (You can read it here.)
We started reading the article and conversing over it, commenting on how timely, and encouraging his thoughts were regarding the discipline of keeping a journal.
After reading the article, we each furiously scribbled our reflections about what journaling meant to us. We arrived with various concerns on our minds, but this respite from the daily grind gave us time and space to reflect on the spiritual act of writing.
I started out this way:
What can journaling do for me? It’s a place, a practice, a playground, a personal space, a retreat with God, a sorting out time for thoughts, ideas and emotions. I can go back and read and recall conversations that I’ve had with God. It shows me God’s goodness and faithfulness. I can write Scriptures, praises, confessions, thanksgivings and ask for things. I can listen with pen in hand.
I continued to write about how my journal gives me space to plan and consult God about His desires for me. I thanked Him for the journaling group at our church and other journalers I know, like Lynn Morrissey, Kelly Greer and Dawn Paoletta and the RJD ladies. I wrote down a couple quotes from the article by Chuck Swindoll.
“I want to keep a journal because it is an intimate conversation with God.”
“Journaling is worth the discipline it takes to cultivate the reward of intimacy with the Almighty.”
“I want that [intimacy] for you. Deep roots. Journaling will help make that happen.”
Besides having a great record of my spiritual journey, much of the time God clarifies His love and purposes for me through the written conversation.
By taking the time to write with my journaling companions, I came away with a renewed vision for my blogging schedule. (I thrive on variety. Notice the new theme on this blog, that’s me needing something new and different to inspire me. While journaling today, a new schedule surfaced for my blog posts.)
So with the unveiling of my new look, I wanted to introduce you to the new schedule and topics du jour.
Monday will be a Sabbath day for me, so no blog post.
Tuesday will be getting back to my roots; a “Defining Moments” devotion. (The word “root” may be the theme for a few weeks.)
Wednesday will be a link to my souldare blog, where I will be posting creative, artsy inspiration.
Thursday will remain Thrilling Guest Thursday and I will be looking for guest contributors to add to the weekly schedule.
Friday will be dedicated to the topic of journaling (which may include guest contributors, prompts, tips and/or links to inspiring articles about journaling.) On the first Friday of the month, of course, I will be posting with the Random Journal Day ladies.
I was going to pursue hosting an online book group for Bonnie Gray’s, Finding Whitespace, but feel I need to put that idea on hold for now. (I still highly reccomend reading her book, and may include some of her prompts on Fridays.)
I like trying new things. I hope you will join in by following, reading, commenting or even guest posting.
If you have any thoughts, feel free to comment or email me at email@example.com
Here’s to living the life we know God has given us!