Start a faith journal?
When I suggested to my friends to start a journal to jog down what they have learned from our pastor's sermons and write down things that are important and worth remembering, not all are in favour. One reason most put forward was that they are not good with words.
In order to motivate them to start one, I started sharing my journal pages with them in our chat groups. Gradually, many of them have started to keep a journal of their daily thoughts, prayers, capturing important events in their life with photos, and most of all notes from their Quiet Time with God and sermons.
A faith journal is a diary that we write, paste, scribble and doodle in. These include our thoughts on certain matters that concern us, our innermost feeling, daily happenings, places we visited and events we want to remember.
Most of all, it's a note book that we use to jog down whatever we have gleaned from spending time with our God in His word, or from sermons, and also contain important points or gist of our requests to our all-loving and all-powerful Heavenly Father.
For me, it's my go-to book for everything that are important to me; whether it's a note to myself to pay my utility or credit card bill; the amount to tithe for that month, sermon notes, daily readings from the Bible or devotional books, ideas for my websites, thinking of you or birthday cards to make for friends, outings with friends; especially kIngdom friends.
For example, if a song or hymn that speaks to me and I want to sing it again, I will also include it in my journal like the one below. I might hand-write the lyrics or print a copy and paste inside the journal. Like the one below after I read The Book of Zephaniah that morning in the Message Bible and the following song came to my mind.
Whom shall I Fear (God of Angel Armies) by Chris Tomlin/Ed Csh/Scot Cash.
I have been journaling since I was a teenager. I love to read and would write down anything I found in the book I was reading that speaks to me; a quote, a poem, a new word or anything I find meaningful. I also included my own thoughts and poems. In addition to writing, I would also collect flowers, and pasted them in my journals. Other memorabilia included were bus tickets, movie tickets and other interesting printed articles.
But why did I journaled and still journaling?
There were two reasons in the beginning but lately, a third reason surfaced which is so significant that I have begin to encourage others to join me in this beneficial and addictive habit.
Have you ever tried so hard to remember something? An event, a sermon or a recipe that you have tried before but cannot remember if you had got the ingredients right?
As human, we tend to forget.
With a journal, we note down important matters and when needed, can refer back to it.
Writing down what we feel can be so therapeutic. We can pour out our innermost feeling onto the white pages.
Feeling discouraged, depressed or angry?
Just go to your journal and write a letter to Jesus. Tell him how you are feeling right at the moment. Bring that discouragement, that fear or whatever it is you are so disturbed about and cast it onto Jesus.
If it's something you don't want plying eyes to see, put it inside a pocket or envelope, seal and paste onto your journal page.
Lately, my pastor had been sharing about how he kept journals and note down what God had revealed to him in His word. As he spent time with Jesus, and received from the Lord, he will record them.
He encourages us to keep a journal to record down what we have learned and received during our quiet time with the Lord. As we read the Bible, we note down anything that speaks to us so we can meditate and act on it.
When we come to the Lord with our pen and journal, we mean business with God, and God honours that.
Following are some scripture verses on writing down or keeping a record:
First, decide if you want to use watercolour washes in your faith journal. Because if you do, you will need a journal with pages at least 160gsm thick so it won't breed over behind or to the next page.
For me, I started with just a pretty note-book in my teen years and later upgraded to a Black hardcover classic Moleskine® journal and lately to an Archer & Olive dot-grids journal because the store near my home stopped carrying Moleskine® journals.
Surprisingly, I was able to use watercolour washes on the Moleskine journal even though the pages are thin. And once dried, the pages do not become warped and wavy.
The Archer & Olive journal, on the other hand, have thick 160gsm pages so I'm able to use watercolour on the pages. But it can become warped and wavy so have to be careful not to overload my brush with too much water.
Moleskine and Archer & Olive journals are relatively more expensive.
Most of my friends who just begin journaling, started out with a Typo journal. Typo is owned by Cotton On and you can get their journals at around ten to fifteen Singapore dollars.
The other day when I was at a big stationery store in town, I came across some good dot-grids journals with no brand that are very cheap and the pages are smooth and quite thick too. For my next journal, I will get one and see how it turns out.
I started out with a black or blue ink ballpoint pen and Tombow markers which I used often for my card-making. But as the pages were thin and the markers do breed over so I switched to colour pencils.
The best pen to use, in my opinion, is the Mitsubishi pens. They are waterproof and the colour range is sufficient for me. I use a a uni-ball fine deluxe black pen for most writing. And also the uni-ball one 0.38mm pens for adding colours to my pages.
Journaling stickers, rubber stamps and washi tapes can be nice additions to your journaling supplies for adding some decorations, colours and fun to your faith journals.
Cute little envelopes for small bits and pieces, memorabilia, or to store love notes to yourself from God's word.
A colour printer would be very useful for those photos you have taken with friends to remember important events in your life. But if not, just go to the print shop to have them printed.
Hope this article will encourage or motivate you to start your own faith journal and one day, you'll be able to look back and see how the LORD has been leading and speaking to you.
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