Sunday, January 16, 2011

Prayer Journal

I feel this way every January...

like there is a fresh new day ahead of me just waiting for the simple pleasures that life has to offer.

I love the prospect of creating an even better tomorrow for my family and starting down that road to becoming a better person, mother, friend, sister, wife, and daughter.

Too often, though {and I know I am not the only one out there} I start off exuberant and at a running pace in January.
 By March, I am jogging.
 By June, I am slowing down to a walk. 
And by October, I am inching my way at the speed of a slug.

How about you?

So, this year I am determined through the grace of God to change that pattern.
Instead of rushing into things, I am taking baby steps. 

I need simplicity.

I need flexibility and I am determined to be OK with "good enough" and NOT perfection...because, well, I'm not perfect.

I have finally come to the conclusion that as a mother, I need to take small moments to achieve my goals, rather than a whole day.
Spending time with my family and enjoying the blessings everyday are far more important and lasting.

My first goal is to make more time with the Lord.
Only through  Him I can become the solid, content, and loving person I desire to be. 
I want to be His light and a beacon of His love to those who need it most. 
I want my family to be passionate for Christ.

To help me make this goal stick {it takes 21 days to form a habit}, I started a prayer journal.
Every morning I am trying to spend 15 minutes with God and write in that journal, as well as read the Bible and a devotion. 
It is a wonderfully refreshing tool that gives you concrete evidence that


Do you ever pray for something, and then forget to thank God when He answers?

I do. 

I read about the idea years ago from Emilie Barnes. She is one of my favorite authors.
I read through most of her books when I was first married and they really changed my perspective.

Here is what you will need:

a notebook
tab dividers

 That's it!

Each day of the week you have a different topic to pray over. Place tab dividers at each new heading in your notebook and label accordingly:

Monday: Family

Tuesday: Finances 

Wednesday: Friends

Thursday: Husband

Friday: Yourself

Saturday: Country and School

Sunday: Sermon Outlines and Missionaries

Of course, you could totally make up your own topics for each day. 
This is just the outline that I use because I feel it covers everything important in life.

Remember to date you entries and when a prayer is answered write it down!
It is really encouraging to look back at what God has accomplished for you and through your life.

Your journal can be simple or extravagant.
I just covered a Steno notebook in fabric and sewed a pocket for a pen.
It is very simple.

I keep my journal in a pretty basket along with my Bible and favorite devotional books. 
My "prayer basket" rests on my night stand next to our bed.
I wake up and can quietly take it to where I am praying that morning.

I am also praying with the kids before school starts and reading a small devotion with them.
I want them to also begin the habit of putting God first and foremost.
Beginning the day with prayer is a wonderful thing.


I hope you are all having a great start to the new year!

I have to leave you with a quote from a sweet, sweet person...Anne Marie at
Na-Da Farm Life

She sums up beautifully what it means to live in Christ.

Freedom isn't the ability to do what you want.

Freedom is the ability to do, what you ought to do...

and this year, don't get bogged down with worries and anxieties....enjoy your life!  Have fun! 

But do the right things morally.......what's best for your family.......

leave yourself behind and follow Him with abandonment......He knows the way.......

life can be SO HARD sometimes, but let it go...........

Isn't that wonderful?

Thanks Anne Marie!



Anne Marie said...

wow...thank you Julia...I was catching up on the posts I hadn't read this week, and to my surprise I see are so sweet Julia -

and that tutorial on your notebook cover is just so awesome! I can't wait to do that!
(if I do, I'll link it and show my readers)

Shorey Alys said...

Great way to remember to pray for all the people I say I will pray for and forget to follow through(I'm glad God knows my heart. Great blogg just found it and following!

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