5 Ways to Dishonor God in Your Journal

Anastasis Faith
           I opened up my first journal that I received when I was nine years old. Here’s a super embarrassing excerpt from when I was eleven. For ease of reading, I left out the spelling errors.

          I have just realized how mature I am. Give or take, I still like to play pranks on my sister Liza. And I still like fairies. But I know so much. Mom trusts me and tells me she doesn’t have to worry about me spilling beans about stuff. I’m really interested in politics. I listen to conversations about Dad’s company. I feel like I’m not a little child anymore. Some people, like my babysitter, think that I’m a little child—not knowing right from wrong. She punished me because I tried to tell her that my brothers aren’t allowed in my room! She said that I talked back, which I did. But that was because she wouldn’t listen! I wish people would stop treating me like a little ignorant child!

           

          The next entry was me venting because one of my siblings had “mistreated” me. A few entries later I was yet again complaining about someone else. I ended that entry by praying, “Dear God, please change this person’s heart.”

          I seriously should probably burn some of these journals. Or at least go through with a thick sharpie! Over the years, I’ve learned more about journaling and more about honoring God in my journal.

          Just because it’s private does not mean that it’s an excuse to sin.

          So how do we dishonor God in our journals? Here are five ways that you can sin while journaling.

1. Complaining

          This is probably one of the biggest sins in my journal. I complained about people, I complained about school, I complained about EVERYTHING. It’s easy, when we’re mad, to just rush to our journal and pour out our frustration. While sometimes this can be helpful in getting rid of a spirit of bitterness and anger, it may more often be a way to savor the anger longer. 

2. Using it to keep a record of wrongs

          I would harbor bitterness in my heart against my siblings, my parents, and other people in my life who made me angry. My journal became a storehouse of offenses instead of a fountain of joy from a prayerful walk with Christ. Writing things down is a GREAT way to keep records of wrongs, which the Bible says is not love (1 Corinthians 13:4-8). And 1 John 4:20 says that we cannot hate our brother and love God.
 
3. Talking about how great you are
          I don’t know if you have ever done this, but I think the clip above from my journal is enough to tell you that yes, I journaled about how great I was. Which is super embarrassing and now quite humbling. I was a very arrogant kid. Pride is the root of all sin and it is something we will always be fighting. I had more than my fair dose of arrogance, however.

          Maybe it goes without saying, but it didn’t for me. Talking about how great you are doesn’t honor God. Even if no one else reads it, it is self-glorification when we should be only glorifying our Savior.

4. Being boy-crazy

          My journal was more like a soap opera drama than anything else. You can totally process your feelings and think through potential boys. But if that’s all that you’re journaling about, you’re teaching yourself to be boy-crazy. It’s a hard line to walk, but God is not honored when we make our journals places that we idolize the cutest guy in our circle of friends. 

5. Dwelling on sinful thoughts

          Journaling can be a great way to process life and sort through emotions. I love journaling now, because it often leads into prayer and such peace. But when I was younger, I often used it as a means to dwell on sinful and arrogant thoughts instead of surrendering those to the obedience of Christ (2 Corinthians 10:31). These can include bitterness, anger, lust, envy, or idolatrous thoughts.

          A journal is a personal place to process life and commune with our heavenly Father. Just as the private place of your mind is under scrutiny by God, so is the private place of your journal. A journal is a wonderful thing. For those of us who need writing to survive like I do, journaling has been a serious blessing from heaven. It’s the most effective way in my life to surrender my worries to God.

          I regret the years that I dishonored God in my journaling and I encourage you to learn to avoid these pitfalls.

          For more thoughts on journaling, check out this Girl Defined article, Don’t Let Your Journal Turn Into a Soap Opera Drama.

Do you journal? What have been the number one BEST and WORST things about journaling? Share in the comments!

Anastasis Faith / Author & Editor

Anastasis is a Texas girl who enjoys writing, blogging, and music. You can connect with her here on her blog, or at morningglorypursuingjesus @yahoo.com

6 comments:

  1. The best thing in my journaling has been the ability to go back and see the ways God was working to bless me through my struggles. The worst thing, probably that I have so much to say I wear out my hand!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's wonderful! I'm glad that's been the worst thing for you! :D I really enjoy journaling and I'm glad I've learned some things since being nine. :P

      Thanks for reading and commenting, Abigale!

      Delete
  2. This was very thought-provoking, Anastasis Faith. Thanks for sharing these five pitfalls we can fall into with our journaling!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much for reading, Kenzi! I'm so glad to hear that it was thought-provoking! Thanks so much for letting me know.

      Appreciate your comment! :)

      Delete
  3. I hadn't really thought about this before.... Thanks for posting!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Savannah, it's something I had not thought about in my journaling experience until somewhat recently. I knew that I had dishonored God in my journal, but after digging deeper it became clear HOW you can dishonor God.

      Thanks so much for reading and commenting!

      Delete

Leave a comment! I read every one of them.

Coprights @ 2016, Blogger Template Designed By Templateism | Templatelib