We had the joy of welcoming Joan Warkentin as our speaker on Tuesday morning to share with us the topic of journaling. The first thing she asked was how many of us had journaled or are currently journaling. Did you know that God commands us to meditate on the Bible everyday? To meditate on scripture is to dwell on it and focus on it. God's promise in Joshua 1:8 is that meditating on His Word will help us to obey it and become spiritually prosperous and successful - we will grow into strong Christians. She didn't waste any time though telling us that this was a "no guilt" presentation. She even shared that she herself had struggled with the idea of journaling on a daily basis when her husband (our pastor) had began a series on it and asked her to participate. She then shared how once she started she was amazed by how much closer she felt drawn to God.
We started the topic by going over the different kinds of journals that are out there for use. They included ones that are made for adults, ones that are made for children and even ones that go from a "light" reading to ones that require reading several chapters a day. She also mentioned that journals are available for purchase from the church for $7.
Before she had us "practice" journaling, she gave us an acronym to use as an outline to guide us through the process. S-O-A-P. This stands for:
Scripture: Choose a reading and copy a verse to journal on.
Observations: Summarize what you read.
Application: Apply it to your life. How will you be different today because of what you've read? Look for promises to enjoy and commands to obey.
Prayer: Write down a short prayer to God.
After we talked through the process, she gave us a sample journal page and had us read Colossians chapter 3 and we practiced journaling about what we read using the SOAP method. We were to read it all and then choose a verse that spoke to us. After we were done, we discussed our journaling among our group and talked about how we were able to learn from each other's observations.
Joan finished by telling us that she had a group of women who would get together once a week and journal together. They would meet for breakfast or lunch and would visit and then journal together and finish by sharing their thoughts. She suggested that this might be a good way to get yourself into the word even if it's only one time a week and there is no preparing for this type of study, so it's easy to do!
Thanks Joan for coming and sharing with us!