As a teenager, I wrote in a journal on a nightly basis. My friend drama, boy problems, and irrational adolescent thoughts were stamped within the binding of those diaries. In fact, it was almost a ritual ~ coming home from a night out with friends, scribbling every minute detail onto the pages, and lying in bed analyzing it all.
Before social media brought instant communication, commentary, and opinions into our everyday existence, we were left wondering about conversations, relationships, and impressions. Now at this time in my life, I realize that my job, children, and responsibilities have left me with little time to journal about daily happenings. However, I find that sometimes, it feels good to write down a wish, a prayer, or a fleeting moment.
Think about it, how many times have you mentioned to a friend or a relative that you would keep them in your thoughts or prayers? Make this happen. How often have you intended to commit to a personal goal? Write it into your routine. Want to cement that adorable conversation with your toddler to memory? Grab a pen. I’ll show you how you can do it.
Tips for Keeping a Gratitude Journal ~
Go shopping. Bookstores offer beautiful leather stamped and bound journals, as well as beautifully illustrated blank books. Choose one that appeals to you to make it personal.
Choose a format. Some people like to write out entire prayers, stories, or goals. Others prefer bullet points. I prefer to write out my intentions on the left page and to leave the right page for praise. When the request comes to fruition, or you feel gratitude is order, jot down the date and details to complete that particular story on the right-hand page. What a wonderful way to remember everyday miracles and the little joys in life!
Start writing. Let your feelings flow onto the paper. Write them out, then process. Is there a scripture or inspirational quote that you can connect to your request or worry? Google can be your best friend. Do some research and combine your wishes with motivational words.
Set aside intentional time. Some of my friends like to start the day with prayer and personal intentions. Others prefer to have quiet meditation before bedtime. Choose a time that works best for your schedule and read through your journal each day. Add requests, make notes of praises, and allow yourself to be present in your thoughts as you reflect on what is most precious to you.
Whether you call it a prayer journal, diary, or memory book, the purpose should be the same ~ to reflect on special intentions and memories. Those fleeting moments filled with joy and gratitude are the ones we wish we could hold onto forever. But they are like fireflies ~ brief, bright, and beautiful. We may not be able to catch the magic of fireflies in a jar, but we can capture our gratitude and memories in a journal.
“Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.” ~William Wordsworth
~Think on These Things~