We are a family of “Foodies.” We plan out our meals. We anticipate them. We enjoy them. We record them. When a new, “successful meal” is complete, I make sure I’ve marked that recipe for future use. I have a written copy of that recipe either on-line, in one of my cookbooks, or in my recipe box because I want to be able to go back and re-do that menu!
I make notes about how I may have tweaked the recipe, a substitution I made, or even what I learned I need to do the next time I make it. I love flipping through my recipes and bringing up old recipes I’d forgotten about! Without that written reminder, it would have been lost forever because we eat lots of meal in a year’s time!
But even more than my physical food, the greatest “food” I partake of each day is the manna of God’s Word – the Bible. It is a feast that is never complete. There’s always more. It’s rich, sweet, and nourishing. I need it. I look forward to it. I remember it.
For many of us, we enjoy the taking in of God’s Word, but we do little in regards to making a memory of what we’ve read or what we’ve learned. Simply put – we don’t write anything down after we’ve read the Scriptures.
Here are four reasons I’m choosing to journal when I read God’s Word this year ~
- It helps me remember the Truth I just learned. There’s something about putting it in ink that just cements it better in my heart and mind. That leads to the next reason…
- It helps me meditate on those Truths throughout the day. As I’m driving, I’m thinking about what I wrote down. I talk to the Lord and ask Him questions about the things that come to my mind as I ponder it.
- It helps me dig deeper into those Truths and add notes – things from commentaries or quotes from other authors that are a blessing.
- It helps me see my spiritual growth. Just like the physical growth of a child isn’t seen day by day, but you see it when you compare it to last year’s growth chart, neither is my spiritual growth seen daily. However, my journal serves as my “growth chart,” if you will. As I look back a month or a year later on what I’ve written, I see how the Lord has increased my faith, taught me lessons, and revealed more about Himself to me. It’s so encouraging!
I‘ve had seasons when I didn’t journal and I truly feel I didn’t grow like I should have. See if you resonate with my reasons for not doing so. I think there are four basic explanations as to why most women don’t journal ~
- I’m not a writer. I think that can mean two things – 1. I don’t enjoy using a pen…it’s just not my favorite thing to do the process of writing. It’s tiring. It’s messy 2. I’m not really good at expressing myself creatively.
- I used to, but I’ve just gotten away from it. I got tired of the habit.
- It takes more time and that’s one thing I don’t have!
- I really don’t feel like I need to do that. I’m good with just reading. I can remember it without writing it down.
As we think back to all the physical meals we’ve eaten this past year, there’s no way we could give a commentary on each one. How could we answer, “What was the best part? What did you enjoy most?” However, if we had each recipe card in front of us, we could be reminded and have something to share, right? Let’s make the analogy – As we think back to all the spiritual meals we’ve been exposed to in this past year, (preaching as well as personal devotions) could we share one truth we learned from each one? Only if we wrote something down.
Oh how much more value there is in God’s Word than our physical food! Job said it well in Job 23:12 ~
Neither have I gone back from the commandment of his lips; I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food.
Could you and I really say that? It will show in how we value the Bible. Ask God to give you a greater love for His Word so that you will treasure it more than ever before!
Next Wednesday I’m going to share some practical answers to our four excuses and also share a guide in Bible journaling that can be simple, and effective!
Refresh your response to God’s Word,
2 thoughts on “One Thing We Can Do To Grow Spiritually This Year”
Great post! I am a HUGE proponent of journaling. My then-pastor’s wife 25 years ago got me started on journaling as part of my time with the Lord, and I have been doing it ever since. As pastor’s wife myself I helped other women get started. My Bible-reading and journaling is my favorite part of the day and I love It for the reasons you said – it cements what I read in my heart and mind (like in elementary school when students copy lessons from the board!), helps me to dig deeper, and gives me something specific to meditate on. It helps me read more purposefully. I also love that I can go back a year, 2 years, even 5 and 10 years ago and be encouraged by truths and lessons that I may have forgotten about.
Amen! I loved hearing this, Kathi! Thank you for your sweet testimony. I know you’ve grown deeper and closer as a result of this good habit!