Joshua 4:21-24: “Then Joshua told the people: Years from now your children will ask you why these rocks are here. Tell them, ‘The Lord our God dried up the Jordan River so we could walk across. He did the same thing here for us that he did for our people at the Red Sea, because he wants everyone on earth to know how powerful he is. And he wants us to worship only him.’” (CEV)
Prayer journals are beautiful tools useful for strengthening any relationship with God. I started prayer journaling shortly after I began college. I needed a way to document my relationship with God during those transformative years. I used my journal to write down scriptures, prayers, and lessons I learned along the way. Seven years and several journals later, I have a collection of my hardships and how God provided breakthroughs and blessings for each one.
Because of my positive experience with prayer journals, I really want to encourage you to start one. Here are four reasons to keep a prayer journal:
Prayer journals are a reminder of progress.
There are times I think I have not made progress in life because I have yet to achieve my main goals. However, when I read old prayer journal entries, I can see that progress has indeed been made. Goals and vision that I set years ago have been fulfilled. My attitude towards life has been transformed and my desires have been shaped to reflect God’s. As I read my journal, I’m able to celebrate progress instead of beating myself up over things I have not accomplished.
They show that God answers prayers.
As I look back on my prayer journals, I can see that God answered the prayers I wrote. Sometimes it was with a simple yes, other times it was a hard no, and many times God redirected me to pray another prayer. My answered prayers let me know that God hears and cares about me and is working on my behalf.
Prayer journals remind you of your purpose.
Prayer journals remind me of God’s purpose for my life. When I feel fearful or care too much about the opinions of others, I open my journal and read entries where I wrote down my purpose along with scripture to affirm it. This helps me to re-focus, regain confidence, and persevere.
Here’s a quick example of how this works: A few weeks ago I felt anxious about my future so I read few entries from my journal that I wrote three years ago. Those entries spoke specifically to the creation of this blog and how God blessed me with the vision for it. The entries served as confirmation for the direction that my life is taking right now and they encouraged me to keep pressing forward.
They help foster gratitude.
Most of all, prayer journals foster a grateful heart. Prayer journals function as the stones described in Joshua 4. Because my entries remind me of God’s faithfulness through every season of my life, I am able to give Him all the glory. They help me praise and worship Him only.
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