A Journal Of Your Christian Life
Today I read a devotion written by Elizabeth Elliot from the Back To The Bible website. Mrs. Elliot told how she kept a 5 year diary through high school (1948) and college. Looking back on it she says there were so many things God had done in her life that she had forgotten about.
Then she lists several things a person or even a family should keep record of through their daily Christian walk:
1. Lessons learned from your reading of Scripture. (If you put these in a journal instead of marking up your Bible, you will find new things each time you read the Bible instead of reading it through the grid of old notes. Worth a try?)
2. Ways in which you intend to apply those lessons in your own life. (Reading your journal later will reveal answers to prayer you would otherwise have overlooked.)
3. Dialogues with the Lord. What you say to Him, what He seems to be saying to you about some problem or issue or need.
4. Quotations from your spiritual reading other than the Bible.
5. Prayers from the words of hymns which you want to make your own.
6. Reasons for thanksgiving. (Caution: when you get into the habit of recording these, the list gets out of hand!)
7. Things you’re praying about. You might choose to have a separate notebook for this, or an “appendix” in another section of the same book–date on which a prayer was prayed; date on which answered, with space for how the answer came in some cases.
What wonderful sage advice. Elizabeth also had a quote with this devotion from one of her favorite authors, George MacDonald.
“No gift unrecognized as coming from God is at its own best:
therefore many things that God would gladly give us,
things even that we need because we are,
must wait until we ask for them,
that we may know whence they come:
when in all gifts we find Him,
then in Him we shall find all things.”
Personally, I want to work with my children to begin such a detailed “doings of the Lord” journal. Then I would put the MacDonald quote on the very first page of the journal and then the second page would be like a form derived from the above list from which the journal would be organized. Then I would regularly remind my children to write down the things God does in our lives.