Like most little girls, I kept diary after diary growing up. In fact, I can remember my first diary was pink, fuzzy, and covered in hearts… The most typical looking nine year old girl’s diary you could possibly imagine.
To be honest, if you look at the color palette of my blog, not much has changed. Mauve roses are just the grown up version of fuzzy hearts.
Back to the point though… I have always enjoyed writing. I wrote poems, short stories (that had no ending nor a real point or plot), essays, you name it, I was writing it. In fact, I can remember one of my very first poems on Microsoft Word:
Good grammar, oh please
Hit me with a hammer!
Why do we have to be so educated?
When we get so humiliated,
with things we cannot do…
Is that just me, or is it you too?
Um, Rachel Shakespeare? Yeeeah boi.
Anyway, the main point here is that before prayer journaling, I well and truly struggled to pray regularly. Prayer journaling has revolutionized the way I approach my Abba.
There is something so quiet, intimate, and reflective about writing what is on our hearts in a small letter. It is an amazingly wholesome experience every time for me and draws me in for more! I was designed to write and that is why it works so well for me.
Without further a do… here are 3 ways prayer journaling will improve your prayer life.
You can do it anywhere.
I have often been in places or situations where all I wanted to do was pray. Eyes shut, breathing in frustration at my circumstances. I have even gone to the toilets to cover my face and pray!
Prayer journaling is amazing in that you can do it out in the open at a park, a coffee shop, in church (I mean, you can just openly pray in church but still!), in the living room whilst your family watches a movie, or just before bed.
Anywhere your heart desires, you can pray by writing a letter. Just keep your little journal in your hand bag and voila! You can now pray at the coffee shop without hiding away in a bathroom stall. 😛
Writing helps us work through what’s on our hearts.
Have you ever been in a situation where you needed to speak with someone but you knew that a simple conversation wouldn’t do your thoughts or feelings justice? That is why letters are notoriously emotional, sentimental, and definitely romantic.
Praying by speaking is important, but there’s nothing quite like sitting down to write out what is on our hearts and how we are feeling with pen and paper (for me, anyway… did I mention I love to write? 😛 ). Don’t get me wrong, I do love it when I am speaking prayer and the Spirit’s words fall from my lips; it is incredible when the Spirit takes over for you.
Writing however is an act of intention and takes consideration in a different kind of way. It is slow and reflective, leaving room for the Holy Spirit to intervene and impress on our hearts what God’s response may be. Paul’s letters are an impeccable example of the Spirit intervening when we write.
You are more likely to set aside time to sit down and pray by journaling.
I’m not trying to call you out because I’ve been guilty of this one thousand million times (still guilty), but we often neglect to set aside any time to pray apart from before bed. I mean, Jesus spent his nights praying… who are we to believe we should pray less than the Son of God?
Before bed is great if there’s honestly no other time. However, it can be easy to make quick work of our prayers just before we are about to zonk out from a busy day. It is difficult to be reflective and wait on God when we are sleepy, basically! My husband has been known to fall asleep mid prayer on me.
Again, writing leaves room for the Spirit to guide us and wait on the Lord’s response. Not only that, but we are more than likely going to be fully alert and awake when we set aside specific times during the day to write out our prayers.
You are more likely to set aside time to do it if you are sitting down and physically writing your prayer out. I’m not sure why that is the case for me, but it simply is, and so I’ve kind of just ran with it. And these are the reasons you should too!
If you’re interested in a more specific example of reflective prayer journaling, check out my post When you’re unsure about God’s plans for your future. 🙂