The Journal

When the thought first crossed my mind that I should make a New Year’s resolution to keep a daily journal, I immediately dismissed it. Too many past resolutions had fallen by the wayside, and I could foresee ending the year with a journal full of empty pages. I also didn’t have time for another project, I told myself.

However, I had recently completed a counseling course in which keeping a journal was a requirement. The instructor had emphasized making a habit of recording thoughts, ideas, plans, experiences, worries, fears, and victories. It was an important step toward self-awareness, he explained, and that is crucial to being able to help someone else sort out their problems.

I decided to give it a fair try, and I’m glad I did. I chose a journal that had a thought-provoking quote and Bible verse at the bottom of each day’s page, and I committed to spending 15 minutes each day writing in it. Here are some of the benefits I have already experienced:
Keeping a journal helps me to better understand my strengths and to identify self-defeating or negative mindsets and habits.

It helps me uncover discrepancies between what I think and how I act—wanting to lose weight but finding excuses to not exercise, for instance.
Writing about difficult or sad experiences helps me understand and come to terms with what happened, which is a necessary part of the healing process.
Noting what I’ve prayed for each day and keeping a record of how those prayers were answered has strengthened my faith.

Writing about situations with people I have a hard time getting along with has helped me uncover and avoid the patterns that lead to misunderstandings and bad feelings.

At the end of each month I review and summarize the highlights, which gives me a better idea of how things are going, what challenges or obstacles came up and how they were resolved, which prayers were answered, what progress was made toward my goals, which decisions or plans I followed through on, etc.
Looking back I can wholeheartedly say that journaling was worth the effort. The filled-out pages of my 2011 journal are now a treasure chest of ideas, thoughts, lessons, revelations, achieved goals, and answered prayers.

Philippians 4:13 ESV / I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

John 14:15 ESV / “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.

2 Corinthians 5:9 ESV / So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him.

5 Comments

  1. chi chi
    March 16, 2015, 9:56 pm   /  Reply

    I have been very blessed by this devotional, I always try to get the message for the day. I would love to participate more by joining any of the groups, but it seems as if none is active because the page is blank. Is this peculiar to me or is anyone else experiencing this?
    Admin, kindly reply using my email address. Also I would like to get your Google+ address. Thanks.

  2. March 16, 2017, 10:26 pm   /  Reply

    I love the word of God and his son Amen

  3. Nancy chico
    March 17, 2017, 4:50 am   /  Reply

    Lord i need you in my life right im loss dont know where to turn to ive try to do better but theres people that are negative i. Want to be positive n life please lord help me

  4. Sena Slaughter
    March 17, 2017, 6:10 am   /  Reply

    Dear Nancy,
    God will never leave nor forsake you! He loves you very much! Begin to read in John. Start at the first chapter and prayerfully read through. Ask Jesus to give you understanding… God will never give up on you and I will pray that He helps you.

  5. Miguel Campos
    March 17, 2017, 6:47 am   /  Reply

    Hi May the Lord bless you all your life. With out the Lord we can’t do nothing . Be strong because God promise he will be with us to the end.

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