On Valentines day we gave each of our grandchildren little notebooks to be used as journals. We also gave them brief instructions on how to use them. The older children immediately sat down and began recording their thoughts for the day. Since my youngest granddaughter, four year old Jadyn, cannot yet write, I was worried that she might feel left out. My fears were put to rest when she sat down, took out her pencil, and whispered as she began to write, “Dear diarrhea!” The entire house erupted in laughter, including the uncontrollable giggles of Jadyn. But when the laughter dies, I hope that each of my grandchildren experience the many benefits of keeping a regular journal.
Here are just a few of those benefits:
1. Your communication and writing skills are dramatically enhanced when you record your thoughts every day! In a world where many college graduates are incapable of writing a coherent sentence, continually developing your ability to express yourself gives you an incredible edge in any field you pursue. If you dream of writing a book your journal will become a treasure of material.
2. You will capture crystal clear thoughts and ideas that otherwise WILL disappear, lost forever, leaving only a misty wisp of something you knew was brilliant. No matter what the size of your journal, carry a small notebook with you to capture these ideas as they flit through your brain. Trust me! They do not linger! Some of them can disappear before you can find a pencil. I keep my notebook and pen in the same pocket. If I ever got a piercing, it would be a pencil through my nose, where I could get to it easily and would never lose it.
3. You will have measurable record of spiritual, physical and emotional progress in your life. I recently read an old entry made at one of the lowest points in my emotional health. Reading that entry drove me to my knees in thanks to God for answered prayer. I had forgotten how His grace has surrounded me and brought me to a new level of joy in living. Many of the goals and dreams I have seen fulfilled in life began as entries in a journal. If you write it down, chances are good it will become reality.
4. You will see the hand of God moving in your life. Answered prayer, divine intervention, lessons learned through pain all snap into focus when you take the time to keep a record of life.
If you say, “I don’t know where to start. I don’t know how to do this,” My advice to you is this: Grab a pencil and a notebook. Sit down and begin, “Dear diarrhea,” then just keep writing. If it works for a four year old, it can work for you.
Please comment: I would love to hear about your progress and the benefits you have found from keeping a journal.