About 10 years ago I was introduced to the concept of journaling by a mentor and friend Dan George. Dan challenged me to write my thoughts. He said that unless I can communicate my thoughts in writing they are not clear thoughts.
The concept of journaling or writing in a diary, whatever you want to call it is based upon the idea of remembrance. Capturing this information on paper helps me remember the facts and details as they happen. It helps me understand the emotions I’m experiencing. And it helps boil down where the scriptures are intersecting with my life. Journaling is about remembering and learning about yourself.
God also knew that His people can be forgetful so He commanded the earliest form of “journaling” with the nation of Israel.
When all the nation had finished passing over the Jordan, the Lord said to Joshua, “Take twelve men from the people, from each tribe a man, and command them, saying, ‘Take twelve stones from here out of the midst of the Jordan, from the very place where the priests’ feet stood firmly, and bring them over with you and lay them down in the place where you lodge tonight.’” Then Joshua called the twelve men from the people of Israel, whom he had appointed, a man from each tribe. And Joshua said to them, “Pass on before the ark of the Lord your God into the midst of the Jordan, and take up each of you a stone upon his shoulder, according to the number of the tribes of the people of Israel, that this may be a sign among you. When your children ask in time to come, ‘What do those stones mean to you?’ then you shall tell them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord. When it passed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. So these stones shall be to the people of Israel a memorial forever.”
And the people of Israel did just as Joshua commanded and took up twelve stones out of the midst of the Jordan, according to the number of the tribes of the people of Israel, just as the Lord told Joshua. And they carried them over with them to the place where they lodged and laid them down there. And Joshua set up twelve stones in the midst of the Jordan, in the place where the feet of the priests bearing the ark of the covenant had stood; and they are there to this day. For the priests bearing the ark stood in the midst of the Jordan until everything was finished that the Lord commanded Joshua to tell the people, according to all that Moses had commanded Joshua.
This afternoon I completed my 6th journal and purchased my 7th. The last four journals have been black college ruled Moleskins. The 6th journal was started in June of 2010 and contains a lot of struggle, success, and ultimately learning’s about myself.
Getting a new journal is an opportunity to start over. The writings in the previous journal can be put to bed. The thoughts can still mined for learning’s, but the source is no longer active. The new journal is like uncharted territory and I’m fired up to start the new journey.