As we read God’s Word we begin to see how God responds to things. Doing daily devotions repatterns the way we think and transforms the spirit of the mind. Then, when we face similar situations as Jesus did, we begin to respond in the same way. Journaling is an excellent way to both record and process what God has spoken to us. It's also a useful tool to use at a later time to reflect on and review some of the "gems" that you have received. Without writing these down, you may forget those blessings and some very important lessons! While journaling is a very personal time with the Lord, you may want to share some of your daily devotions with your small group or mentors. Through discussion, you may be able to look deeper into what God is speaking to you, gain new insights and even encourage others.
Find a quiet place to be alone with God (Matthew 6:6). All you need is a Bible and a way to record your thoughts. As you begin, pause to praise God and express your desire to know Him more (Jeremiah 9:23-34). Then open your Bible and ask Him to teach, correct, and train you in righteousness (2 Timothy 3:16). Make sure that this time does not become mechanical or monotonous. Focus on being with God, engaging in His Word, and responding to His Spirit (Psalm 63:1-8).
R.E.A.P : A PERSONAL GUIDE TO WORSHIP:
Typically, you will read two chapters of Scripture each day. You may walk through the steps below after reading one or both of the chapters. Either way, read each chapter slowly, carefully, prayerfully, thoughtfully, humbly, and joyfully. As you read, look out for verses that you may want to memorize, and begin memorizing. Also, periodically review verses you have already memorized.
After you read the Bible, spend time reflecting on what it says and means. Ask the following questions and write down some of your thoughts in response. You don’t necessarily have to answer every question. Just use them as a guide to help you examine what you have read.
What is happening in this passage?
What words, phrases, or ideas seem particularly important?
What does this text teach you about the gospel?
o (Character of God) What does this text teach you about God?
o (Sinfulness of Man) What does this text teach you about man?
o (Sufficiency of Christ) What does this text teach you about who Christ is and why we need Him?
o (Necessity of Faith) What does this text teach you about trusting and following Christ?
o (Urgency of Eternity) What does this text teach you about the hope of heaven or the horror of hell? A.PPLY After examining the Word, apply it to your life. Ask the following questions based upon the text(s) and write down your thoughts in response. Again, you don’t have to answer every question.
What sin(s) do I need to repent of and/or avoid?
What truth(s) do I need to believe?
What command(s) do I need to obey (what do I need to give up, stop doing, start doing, or continue doing)?
What principle(s) need to change the way I think, speak, and/or act, and how will I implement this change?
What relationship(s) do I need to establish, strengthen, or change?
By the power of God’s Spirit, what can I do today to apply God’s Word to my life? P.RAY Pray according to your examination and application of the text(s), asking God to change your heart, mind, attitudes, actions, and relationships based on the time you’ve spent in His Word. Let this specific praying lead you more generally to...
Praise—Worship God for who He is.
Repent—Confess your sin to God and acknowledging your need for Jesus.
Ask—Intercede for particular needs in your life and other’s lives.
Yield—Surrender your life to following Jesus wherever and however He leads you. Conclude your time alone with God by committing to share what He has taught you with at least one other person (your roommate, spouse, child, coworker, friend, small group, etc.). Specifically pray through your schedule for the day (or the following day if you are spending this time at night), asking the Lord to direct you by His Spirit in everything you think, say, and do. Finally, ask the Lord for opportunities to share the gospel with others, ask Him for courage to obey, and then be ready to take advantage of the opportunities that He provides.
A Sample Journal Entry