One of my most favorite things about social media is Facebook Memories, the 21st century version of an old photo album. I love how these images from the past randomly appear in my feed, reminding me of people and places too soon forgotten.
For those of you who don’t know me well, I’m a bit of a word nerd; I love to research words in a dictionary.
To remember means to use effort to recall an idea or to intentionally preserve a memory.
In many places throughout the scriptures, God commands us to remember. There are certain things He does not want us to forget.
“Don’t forget you were delivered from bondage.”
“Don’t forget all of the Lords benefits”.
“Remember the way the Lord your God has led you”.
“Remember Him in everything”.
“Remember the words of the Lord”.
“Remember the deeds of the Lord”.
“The Holy Spirit will cause you to remember all things I have spoken to you”.
Even the sacrament of communion was given by Jesus for the purpose of remembering His death.
God asks us to use effort to recall who He is; to intentionally preserve the memory of what He has done for us and the words He has spoken to us.
Remembering His faithfulness in the past strengthens us and encourages us in the present and gives us hope for the future.
This is one of the main benefits of journaling, writing down the different ways I sense God’s activity in my life on a day-to-day basis through scripture, conversations, music, a podcast or even through dreams.
When I record the things I sense Him revealing to me, I am preserving the memory of them, and even though they sometimes seem random and unrelated, I eventually begin to see patterns or threads of God’s communication to me. But if I had not used effort to remember them, those encounters with Him would have been forgotten.
A journal is a lot like Facebook Memories, only far better, because a journal records more than earthly events. A journal marks our encounters with the living God, the creator of the universe who longs to draw us into relationship with Him. And when He speaks, I want to remember His words.
If you are interested in learning more about the spiritual practice of journaling, stay tuned! On Wednesday, June 17 I will be launching a new online course that will walk you through the process of creating your own journaling practice. It doesn’t matter where you are in your journaling experience, as long as you have the desire, willingness and commitment to practice.