If you’ve never been in the habit of keeping a faith journal, you might think your meditative prayer and reading scripture has given you a strong spiritual life. But beginning your journaling journey can supplement your spiritual practices and make tangible much of the faith you’ve taken for granted. Staring a faith journal is a great way to track your daily prayers, the gratitude you feel for God’s gifts and offers new ways of exploring scripture. Take that leap of faith today.
1) Creative Prayer
A faith journal doesn’t have to be exclusively about writing. Color, shape and doodling – whatever takes your heart’s desire – can all have its place in your faith journal.
If your prayer is directed at someone special, it can feel exceptionally powerful to write their name and sketch a growing, colorful shape around it. Once their name appears on the page, glorified by color, you can write your prayer for them or simply think about it. But the prayer will have a physical manifestation that can strengthen it.
You can also sketch mandalas in a meditative way. These complex patterns of repeating shapes can be relaxing to sink into, and drawing and coloring them can become a form of prayer in itself. It’s your faith journal, so get creative!
2) Making Prayer Tangible
The time you spend in prayer each day forms a valuable foundation for your spiritual life and strengthens your connection with God. When this takes place in your mind it’s almost a meditative practice, and can often lead to a profound inner feeling.
Writing your prayers down can strengthen them further as the process of putting your thoughts into writing can make them more tangible. Through your faith journal you can pursue a closer connection to God, creating a concrete history of your prayers and devotion on any given day.
If you write in a stream-of-consciousness, letting the words flow out of you, you might be surprised at what you look down to read. New, deep ideas can turn up on the page without conscious effort. Alternatively, writing your prayers in bullet form can help you conceive of them more accurately and make them easier to review in the future.
3) Scripture Is Powerful On The Page
Strengthening your connection to scripture is a great way to explore your faith. We all have particular passages that speak to us, those that we come back to time and again to find peace in or contemplation amongst. Reading scripture is one thing, but journaling scripture can take your understanding of your favorite passages to another level.
Exploring the idea of a crossbook – a book that comes with printed scripture on one side of the page and a blank side opposite for your thoughts and notes – is a great way to begin your faith journal. You can underline and highlight the passages that speak to you on one side, while elaborating on how it deepens your devotion on the other. You’ll be on a path to wisdom and faith.
4) Track Your Holiest Behaviours
A faith journal can also function as a diary for all your holiest habits, letting you reflect on your past week or month and consider ways you can better manifest your faith in the future. You can record how many hours you spent volunteering, how your generosity manifested and how long you prayed for in your faith journal.
Having a record of these behaviours can make it easier to strengthen them as routine habits. All these practices have great spiritual value and your faith journal will encourage you to perform them more often.
5) Express Your Gratitude
There are many spiritual and psychological benefits to gratitude, yet if you don’t make an effort to express your gratitude it can often slip away without being recognized. Journaling gives you an example to record God’s gifts, ensuring that you value them for what they are.
Taking time out of each day to write down what God has brought you can make each day, no matter how hectic or stressful, seem a little brighter.
Keeping a faith journal has so many spiritual and psychological benefits and it’s sure to strengthen your relationship with God as well as developing a deeper understanding of his message. Get creative with your faith journal with colors, shapes and content. You’ll soon find out it’s a habit that’s hard to break.
Katherine Rundell is a spiritual writer at UKWritings.com and Academized.com services. She works with local church groups to inspire young people to explore their faith in new and creative ways. She is also a proofreader at Boomessays.com.