A situation came up. Something about it was very troubling so she spent time pondering. She let it ruminate all evening. As she went to bed, confusion still clouded her thoughts and she wondered what it all meant. Being unsure, she woke up with it still on her mind, no closer to clarity.
The next day, through her ministry at House of Hope, she was reminded of the importance of journaling. She remembered the power of the pen that enabled her to process and to give voice to what might be happening in her heart. She realized and asked herself, “How can I so quickly forget to use the tools I have at my disposal?”
Anne Frank expressed her understanding of the power of writing when she wrote, “I want to write, but more than that I want to bring out all kinds of things that lie buried in my heart.”
Journaling enabled me to traverse the uneven and often rocky path of my teenage years back in my humble little hometown, Estherville, Iowa. Writing led me to explore what I was thinking and feeling. It allowed the dark and unknown impulses to come up for light and gave them permission to exist so they could be dealt with. Getting the words on paper encouraged me to process my situation but in those years I had no idea what I was doing or what this tool was inviting me into. I only knew that I loved words and somehow writing them down helped me get through life. Jesus was with me during those cloudy years. This was one of the ways he helped me find my way.
Another friend who recently went back to explore journals written almost 20 years ago, found testimony to God’s presence and faithfulness during an extremely difficult time. The writing down of her thoughts and feelings enabled her to sort things out as she lived the experience. Looking back at these journals has invited an amazing time of recognizing, once again, that God was with her then…which translates into the fact that he continues to be with her now.
So let us not forget the power and capability of Jesus to use:
to speak to us, help us understand his heart for us and enable us to hear from him.
Journaling is one of the ways we can use to work through situations that come into our lives and we must not forget its power. If we have a hammer but never take it out of our tool box, we’ll never get the nail into the wall! The next time a situation comes up, let’s pull out our pen and write away to explore how we feel and what is wanting to have a voice.