HOW GUIDED JOURNAL PROMPTS HAVE HELPED MY PRAYER LIFE
Updated: Jun 17
prayer is something that has been with me basically my whole life. I was taught to pray every morning when I woke up in a spirit of gratitude for a new day, and again every night before bed to be thankful for the day that past while asking for rest and protection while I slept. you would think by now that I would be well grounded and have it all figured out but, no. unfortunately that's not how that worked out for me. I wish it did though!😂
more often than I would like to admit, I'd find myself forgetting to pray because of feeling 'too busy', 'too tired', or honestly, not even knowing what to say. even more so my mind would wander mid-prayer, completely forgetting that I was praying to begin with because I got caught up thinking about what happened that day, or something that I want to do, etc. I just couldn't stay focused.
I wasn't until I was introduced to prayer journals that I started to see all of that begin to change.
journaling has taken the act of prayer and turned it into an art, a diary, a true outlet for open dialogue.
with that, here are the specific areas where guided prompts have truly helped (and are continuing to help) turn my prayer life around:
I don't know about you but, when I would pray, before I knew it my mind would be going on an unexpected tangent about what I needed to do, had forgotten to do, or who knows what else that decided to pop up at that moment; and then I have to shake it off (and feel the need to ask for forgiveness for being so scatter brained) and pick up where I left off.
well, ever since turning my prayers into journal entries that has drastically improved. I honestly can't remember the last time it's happened. I think the reason for that is because as I'm writing each word down in my journal, I'm also saying it in my head, almost like I'm reading a book, so between simultaneously writing and reading I don't even have the mental availability for my mind to wander. It has allowed me to be more present and honed in on what I'm praying about, and instead of getting lost on a tangent, I have found that I'm falling deeper into my prayer and really getting everything out.
prior to following guided prompts, I felt like I had been praying the same things over and over again, day in and day out. I honestly felt like a broken record most of the time. the awesome thing about prompts is you're usually posed with a question to answer. and depending on what prayer journal or prompt you're using, the focus is always different.
for instance if you're using a prayer journal that's associated with a particular book--it acts like a 'study guide' for that book--it'll prompt you with specific topics that go along with the message being conveyed in the book and maybe shed a new light on a subject you had been praying on for a while.
examples include (but definitely not limited to) Joel Osteen's 'Next Level Thinking', or Joyce Meyer's 'Unshakeable Trust'.
In other prompts, like the one I'm currently completing, 'Letters to God' from 'Be Spiritually Bold' on Instagram, you're greeted with questions like 'what gifts has God given you and how can you use them to help others?', or 'describe a time or situation when God showed up unexpectedly in your life.' which for me has been a great way to open doors to pray on things I never really think to pray about ergo making my prayer time less repetitive, while allowing me to grow in those same areas that I may have unknowingly been neglecting.
study & application
another aspect of my prayer life that I really struggled with is getting into scripture and verses. remembering them, knowing what they meant, and how to apply them in my life today. the wonderful thing about prompts is that along with the question you're given for any particular day, you're also given a verse or two to think on that is related to that question.
this has been great to not only bring my attention to verses that I may not typically drift to (honestly, it's really easy just to go to my favorites or the popular ones), but also to help me connect the dots to modern day life while giving me a better understanding of what they represent. 'cause lets be real... what good is it to read something if you can't understand it or know what to do with it?
now, you may or may not pray often and that's ok, I hope that this post was helpful if you've been lookin' to grow in your prayer life and didn't know where to start.
thanks so much for reading today! If you decide to try a journal prompt, I would love to hear how it goes so feel free to send me a message or tag me.😊