So HOW do we journal?
Relax and enjoy the process. You will get better at this the more you do it. You will make mistakes and sometimes hear the flesh more than you hear God. But even in that, there will be gems in what you write that you know weren’t you.
Find a quiet place free from distractions and where you will least likely be interrupted.
Put on some quiet worship music if you like.
Commit this time to the Lord. Present your mind and heart to God and ask Him to fill them.
Start off by writing or typing out what you want to say to God. You may feel more comfortable talking to Father, Jesus or the Holy Spirit. He is three in one, so He will hear you, regardless of Who you address your journals to.
An example of what you write may be:
- I seem to be having a bit of a struggle this morning Father. So here I am for our chat. What are You saying in this?
- Father, I seem to be so angry, and yet I don’t know why! I just can’t seem to get on top of it. It frightens me.
- Good evening Father. Boy it is cold today! Thank You that I am feeling well at present. I have just come to spend some time with You. What would You like to do tonight?
Pause for a bit, and wait for Him to respond. Write down what you feel He is saying to you. Not sure if what you are hearing is God? Write it down anyway. This is an act of faith, and it seems to ‘prime the pump’ and gets the flow going.
So what does He sound like? In most probability, He will not talk to you audibly. I can almost guarantee that He won’t. He will speak to you through your thoughts. They will sound different to your own thoughts, and will be in the first person, ie using words like ‘I’, ‘we’, ‘me’, ‘my’ etc. They will be a spontaneous flow of thoughts, feelings, words etc that will seem to ‘pop’ in your mind.
These are examples of the replies to what I have written above 1, 2, 3 etc
- I love you. I am your healer. I am greater than any scary thoughts, because My word is truth, not the thoughts. I will bring you through this. All is well, and you are safe, safe with Me.
- I will draw the poison out of you with My presence. But you must come to Me, and come to Me often. And you will become more like Me as you come into My presence. I am not angry at you, but pleased that you come to Me with your problem.
- I would like to whisper secrets to you. I love you. You are precious to Me. You are more precious than the most precious of gems.
How can you be sure you have heard from God, and are not being deceived? There are three things you can test it against.
- The Word of God – does it line up with the Bible? If you are hearing that you are to have an affair, or murder someone (!), then it does not line up with the Word. Scrap it.
- Does it witness with your spirit – does it sit right with you, or do you get a ‘check’ in your spirit? I recently thought I heard Him talking to me about chocolate chips, but I think it was more my bed calling to me. It wasn’t sitting right or even making sense for that matter!
- Ask a trusted, mature Christian friend to read through your journal and give you their honest opinion.
I would love to hear how you go.
Adapted from from Dialogue with God by Mark Virkler
Additional material from my e-book Staying Afloat due to come out later this year.