I have always loved a new journal and a fancy pen. There is something special about putting those first words on the page and filling each of the pages with thoughts, Scripture, and prayers. I find journaling God’s Word keeps me grounded in my faith and growing in my relationship with the Lord.
“Your word I have hidden in my heart, That I might not sin against You” (Psalm 119:11).
Journaling doesn’t just put the words on the page, but it helps engrain them in the heart. If you have ever wanted to journal God’s Word, but you aren’t sure what to write, or where to start, this is for you. I am going to share a few tips that have helped me journal through the Bible several times.
Photo credit: Unsplash/Kelly Sikkema
1. Purchase a Journal That Makes You Smile
Yes, you read that right. If you want to stay consistent, it helps if you have a journal that you want to open. One of my favorite journals has one Bible verse on each page. This is a help for me because even on my hardest days when I feel unmotivated to read or journal, I have something on the page that gets me started.
2. Choose a Pen or Pencil That You Love
There is not much worse than scrambling through the junk drawer for a pen only to put the pen to the page and realize it’s old and doesn’t even work. Grab a fresh set of pens or pencils that you know you will enjoy using and keep them in a special place with your journal.
3. Keep It Simple
While there are tons of awesome ideas and ways to study the Word or journal through the Bible, I find I am most consistent when I simplify my plan. The more complicated or complex, the more likely we are to throw in the towel and say, maybe next year. I start in Genesis or Matthew and work my way through verse by verse.
Some days I read several chapters. Other days I only read a few verses. For me, the key is looking and listening for God to speak to my heart. When I sense God speaking, I start writing in my journal. Sometimes it is a verse, other times a prayer. But simply going to the next chapter and next verse, keeps my plan simple enough to keep up with. There is no designated amount to read, my goal is to hear from the Lord.
Photo credit: ©Getty Images/Koldunova Anna
4. Write Something Every Single Day, Even if It Is One Word
While I usually like to write out an entire verse and/or prayer, sometimes life is hectic and circumstances get the best of me. There are many times in my journal where I have simply written the prayer, “Help,” or a word that I glean from reading the Word of God like, “trust” or “hope.” Do not condemn yourself by a word count or lack of words. God hears the cry of your heart, even through the pages of a journal.
5. Write Scripture, Prayer, Praise, or Thanks to God
When I pick up my journal, it is always with the mindset to offer something back to God through what He is saying to me through His Word. It might be my words of prayer, worship, or even a prayer of thanksgiving. Some days I only do one of these, but often I find my heart is overflowing with all of these. Getting in God’s Word consistently feeds the soul and causes the heart to live overwhelmed by God. It usually not a struggle to come up with words because God is so faithful to give me exactly what I need, exactly when I need it.
6. Remember Each Day Is a New Day
If you missed yesterday because you overslept, got too busy, or simply forgot, begin again today. Do not get down on yourself or think you can never miss a day. Start again. It is a new day. Even if you miss an entire week or month, begin again. There is never a better time than today to increase your time with God through reading His Word and journaling.
Photo credit: Unsplash
7. Read God’s Word until a Verse Jumps out at You
When you find something in God’s Word that speaks directly to you or hits you in a fresh or encouraging way, write it down. This is when you reach for your fancy pen and cute journal and start writing. Don’t get hung up on doing it right or wrong. Just write.
8. Write out a Verse You Want to Memorize
Don’t just write it out one time. Write it for a week or until you can quote it aloud. Writing it down and staying in the same verse until it makes a mark on the heart is a great way to tuck God’s Word into your heart.
9. Date Your Words
By making sure you write down the date each day, you are creating a record to go back to and revisit when you need a little extra encouragement. I cannot tell you how many times I have flipped through old journals and received sweet reminders of God’s amazing grace in my life. I love looking back at answered prayers and ways God used certain verses in my life in the past.
10. Record God Moments
When God works in your life in a special way, write it in your journal and be specific. You will be so thankful to have the memory recorded for you to have for years to come. There is nothing sweeter than remembering all God has done our lives. It gives us the reminder that if God came through then, He will come through again.
Don’t wait until the new year to start journaling through the Bible. Grab yourself a pen and journal and get writing. It doesn’t have to be long and there do not need to be a lot of rules. Just write as God leads. And then look back and see all God has done. How sweet to see the goodness of God written on the pages of your journal.
Photo credit: Unsplash/Alexis Brown
Micah Maddox is a women’s event speaker, Bible teacher, and author of Anchored In: Experience a Power-Full Life in a Problem-Filled World. She is passionate about helping women find purpose, peace, and calm in our chaotic world. Micah is on the Proverbs31 Ministries First5 Writing Team. As a pastor’s wife and mother of four, she contributes her time to her family and local church serving as a women’s ministry leader. Micah loves to give a voice to hurting hearts and writes and speaks to the one who needs encouragement. You can connect with her at micahmaddox.com or on YouTube. You can find her book here.