Just over the last 3 weeks or so I started to write down my prayers instead of say them. I borrowed this idea from a book I read several months ago entitled, “The Help.” In the book, the main character Abileen writes down her prayers. This is something she began as a kid and it had carried on into adulthood. In the story, everyone Abileen knew asked her to pray for them because it was a known fact that most, if not all of her prayers got answered. It was as if God heard Abileen’s prayers clearer in some way, almost as though she had a direct route to Him via her notebook.
Now that I started writing down my prayers, I can’t stop. It makes me feel solid in some way. I’ve come to enjoy documenting what I talk to God about and what I pray for. ‘Prayer Journaling’ is what I’m calling it and it is very cathartic. Whenever I have something that’s knawing at me or worrying me I give it to God with a few strokes of my pen.
Just like Abileen in “The Help,” I too, seem to be receiving some divine answers in response to my writings. It is moving and wonderful. The ‘answers’ encourage me to continue on. The time I spend writing is my special time with God- I’m doing an activity with him and I love it. I enjoy the process of writing in general and this is just another way for me to express myself. Here is a little something to read on the value of writing journals.
Interested in Prayer Journaling yourself? Well then, I encourage you to give it a try. You can start out simple (a cheap spiral notebook) or as fancy (Moleskein ruled journals) as you like. Tuck it away somewhere no one will find it and refer to it during the day if you need to. Sometimes something happens in the middle of the day and I don’t want to wait till night time to write it down. Instead, I pull out my journal and give it to him right then and there.
Over the last 3 weeks I’ve only missed a few days of writing down my prayers. I’ve already written halfway through my first journal. I look forward to soon filling up the last page, tucking it away on my shelf for safe keeping and opening up a fresh, new journal and beginning the whole process again.
Don’t really believe in God? You don’t necessarily have to be religious keep a prayer journal- just write down your thoughts, worries and feelings to something higher than you, whatever that maybe. Just write it down and let it go.
One more thing I add at the end of each ‘entry’ is a ‘Gratitude Page’. I write ‘Gratitudes for [the date]’ and list 5 or 6 things from that day that pleased me, or I that I was grateful for. If there are days that not much happens, or it is a bad day, I still write a gratitude page-but I’m more thankful for general things like my health, my kids, the dog, yada. I just try to be mindful of all I have and to be grateful every day. Try it, it will make such a difference to your life.
The delightful thing about a prayer journal is it doesn’t have to be all prayers. You can write down your feelings, ideas and hopes. Just talk, let it all out. If you feel you need forgiveness for something, ask through your pen. Write it down and let it go. If you travel, tuck it in your bag and take it with you. I guarantee you will feel so much better if you decide to do some prayer journaling yourself. I used to say prayers at night when I went to bed, but I had a penchant for falling asleep mid-prayer. Now I write. And I think God really likes it.
If you want to fancy up one of those common black and white composition books and turn it into an attractive prayer journal, check here for how to make one.