Friday, February 4, 2011

Why bother to journal? Part 3

The Promise/Praise Journal

I haven’t seen a promise box in years so I’m not sure if they still make them, but the idea was a good one. It was a small plastic box filled with one inch by 2 inch cards, each bearing a byte of Scripture meant to comfort, encourage or lift you up. The idea was to take a card each day and either memorize it or put it somewhere it could minister to you during the day.

What fun, to reach inside the box and pull out a card, never knowing what verse the Lord would give for that day. It never ceased to amaze me how often those verses fit so well with the events and problems of the day.

Over the years I owned several promise boxes, though now I have a small pocket-sized book  containing promises from God’s Word . It’s not as much fun since you can’t mix up the  verses and there’s really no element of surprise since the verses are more visible on the pages.  But it does serve its purpose – to encourage, strengthen and uplift my heart.

The nice thing about the book is that the promises are categorized. When I a m afraid, I can read verses on trust. When i feel ill, I go to the promises on healing and so forth. But what does this have to do with journaling?

Several years ago, a friend challenged me to keep a blessing journal – writing down all of the things I was thankful for so I could return to it later and remember the good things God had done.

Actually, it started out as a blessing jar – a canning jar with a fancy lid, filled with slips of paper. I wrote on each piece something for which I was thankful, an answered prayer or a comforting word God had given me along with the date. When I needed encouragement, I would take a slip of paper out of the jar and read it and remember the details of theblessingsjournal entry on that slip of paper.

Soon I graduated to a spiral notebook which I decorated to make it  more personal for me. In it I wrote down each blessing from the Lord along with a more detailed description of events, people and circumstances surrounding the blessing.  It always amazed me how the Lord worked out the intricate details of His blessings to me!

In recent days, I have also included the promises God gives me each day. I like to take a promise from my little Bible promise book and  write it in my journal. Then I write about all the ways God has fulfilled that promise to me.

What an incredible tool this journal has become! Whenever I feel discouraged, I can thumb through  the pages and see personal examples of how God has dealt with me in the past. My faith is built up, I am strengthened and encouraged. I have a weapon to fight against the lies of the enemy because I can see in black and white how much God cares about me!

Here’s the challenge: Try keeping a promise and praise journal for thirty days. 

Each day write down one promise God gives you from His word.  At the end of the day, look back and reflect on how God fulfilled that promise during the day. Write down how God blessed you through that promise.

At the end of thirty days, go back and reread your promise and praise journal. I believe you will see a phenomenal growth spurt in your faith and your Christian walk! I’d love to hear what God does for you!

1 comment:

Marsha Young said...

Bonnie - I agree that keeping a record of God's blessings is real encouragement.

Just the other day I added an item to my "answers to prayer" list - and it turned out that God had answered weeks earlier, but I only heard about it last week. :)

He is blessing us even when we don't know about it.

Thanks for stopping by Spots and Wrinkles. God bless you - Marsha