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How to See God's Hand in Your Life through a Prayer Journal

How to See God's Hand in Your Life through a Prayer Journal

How to See God's Hand in Your Life through a Prayer Journal

Have you ever poured out your heart to God in your journal? Have you ever journaled your dreams?

There is something special and significant that God can reveal to us and teach us through a prayer journal. Here are ways we can see God’s hand in our lives through prayer journaling:

Have you ever poured out your heart to God in your journal? Have you ever journaled your dreams?

There is something special and significant that God can reveal to us and teach us through a prayer journal. Here are ways we can see God’s hand in our lives through prayer journaling:

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1. God can use journaling to teach us how to pray.

I can remember journaling as a little girl, barely able to scribble my letters on the page. I had one of those little diaries with the lock and key. It was a most prized possession of mine.

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As a shy and fearful child, I went though some challenging times. My “Dear Diary” soon became, “Dear Jesus” and I began writing to Him in that way every day, especially when I was lonely or isolated in school. Little did I know at the time this was a kind of prayer that reached God’s heart. The Lord was teaching me to run to Him, to sit with Him, to open up to Him. He was teaching me how to dwell with Him in prayer.

2. Journaling can deepen our time with the Lord.

I didn’t journal for many years, but I remember the time of my life when the Lord began drawing me back into daily journaling. I began opening up my heart to my Heavenly Father each day in my journal, being vulnerable with Him, crying out to Him, confessing to Him, writing out my prayers to Him. I shared my greatest fears and my deepest desires with Him. I began to learn that this “secret place” was a safe place for me to open up my heart to Him. It was in this place, this secret place, that I realized a deep desire to dwell with Him, to become aware of His presence, and to learn more about His heart and His character. It was in this place I learned how to have a true relationship with my Heavenly Father.

Prayer journaling helped to lead me to the doorway into my own secret place with the Lord. Little did I know how much “life” would begin to grow from out of this secret place with the Most High God, my Heavenly Father.

3. God can use journaling to teach us to hear His voice.

The Word of God is the foundation for learning how to recognize God’s voice. I know that as I absorb the Word, as I get it into my spirit, I’ll learn how to better recognize His voice because I’ll know it, and recognize it from His Word. 

As I open up my journal to write each day, I quiet myself to wait and listen for what He’s speaking. “Lord, what’s on Your heart? What are You wanting to speak to my heart today?” And then from the quiet, I’ll begin to hear Him speak. I’ll write down what He speaks to me, to hold onto it. Oftentimes, the Lord will take me back to these words in my journal to later confirm what He spoke to me, or perhaps to give me more revelation.

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Journaling, in addition to soaking up the of the Word of God, is a way God can teach us about His heart and help us to learn to recognize His voice when He speaks to us.

“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.” (John 10:27 NKJV)

4. God can use journaling to reveal pieces of the “puzzle” that He wants us to connect. 

Every now and then the Lord leads me into an adventure through my journals. Sometimes a memory will pop into my head and I’ll be led to a particular journal to see what the Lord was doing in my life at that time.

As I look back into my journals, the Lord shows me things I may have never connected before. Oftentimes I’ll take note of prayers I’ve written down, questions I’ve asked, things I’ve felt I’ve heard Him speak to me. When I follow Him into my journals, suddenly I’ll get to see His fingerprints of faithfulness, the work of His hands. It’s like He will let me see a glimpse of the bigger picture of what He was working together all along. A little piece of the bigger puzzle beginning to form.

“OH! Lord, that’s what You were saying! That’s what You were doing. It was You! I can see that now, and I think I maybe knew it then too, now that I’m learning about You, and learning about me. I can see how You were working in that situation all along!"

5. God can use journaling to paint a picture for us to see.

I love how the Lord can use my journal as a way for me to see what He was “illustrating” all along.

He doesn’t have to do that, but He does. And when He does, I sit in awe and amazement and wonder: “God… You were doing that all along! I can see it now through these pages of my journal!”

“God, that time You said that thing that made no sense to my mind at the time, and yet I knew it was a word from You. I understand now, why You spoke that to me!

“God, that dream You gave me, it all makes sense to me now!”

It’s like a beautiful thread that is woven into the journal pages. A thread that transforms into a woven picture, that we can begin to see take form. 

“He reveals what is profoundly mysterious and knows what is in the darkness; with him dwells light.” (Daniel 2:22 ISV)

6. God can use journaling to teach us how to steward dreams and visions.

I keep a journal by my bedside, specifically for dreams and visions in the night. I never used to dream very much, but after having a dream that had a huge impact in my life, I asked the Lord for more dreams. I told Him that I would keep a light and a journal by my bed so that I could be faithful to always write them down. Do you know that He gave me more dreams? There are many dreams that I don’t understand in the moment, but many times I do. Some dreams are for “now” and others are for a later time. When we steward what we are given, and we are faithful and grateful, He will give us more, and He will teach us more.

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I encourage you to get a journal just for your dreams, set a pen by your bed and a lamp, and ask the Lord to give you dreams, to speak to you in the night. Tell Him that you are listening and ready to receive, and then wait expectantly. 

“The king answered and said to Daniel, “Truly, your God is God of gods and Lord of kings, and a revealer of mysteries, for you have been able to reveal this mystery.” (Daniel 2:47 ESV)

7. God can use journaling to remind us of His faithfulness, giving us hope while we are in times of waiting.

One morning the Lord reminded me of a powerful and life-changing moment in my life, and so I went to find this particular journal so that I could read the pages. The day happened to be the last page of that particular journal. I read what the Lord spoke to me that day, and then started working my way backwards from there, all the way back to day one of that journal.

I believe the Lord wanted me to trace back and reflect on His faithfulness – to see His faithfulness as I looked through my life on those pages. He wanted me to see where He was working, how He was preparing me, how He was bringing me through certain fears, how He was helping me through certain challenges and struggles, what He brought me out of and helped me step into. He let me see His fingerprints of faithfulness in those journal pages.

8. God can use journaling to help us develop a lifestyle of testimony.

God can use a prayer journal to connect our prayer with His answer. This gives us the opportunity to remember what He’s done, to thank Him for it, and to give Him the glory by sharing our testimony of His goodness and faithfulness.

How many times do we overlook answers to our prayers? If we record our prayers, and we record what God has done for us, how much more opportunity does that give us to live a life of testimony?

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Just start with a notebook, a pen, and a listening heart. 

As you first go into your prayer time, ask the Lord to purify your heart and your intentions. Come into full submission to Him, align your heart with His. Then, in the quiet, as you begin to hear that still small voice, you’ll be able to recognize Him. Write down what He shows you, even if it doesn’t make sense in the moment, even if you don’t understand it. Pray and ask Him for understanding, or a verse of Scripture. 

Thank Him for what He’s shown you, even if you don’t have understanding yet. Write it down, hold onto it, and wait on Him to show you what to do with it. With a journal, God can take you back and show you what He was doing all along, piece by piece. Watch and listen expectantly for the Lord. 

“Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known.” (Jeremiah 33:3 ESV)

“The secret of the LORD is with those who fear Him, And He will show them His covenant.” (Psalm 25:14 NKJV)

There are treasures waiting to be discovered within the pages of our prayer journals.

Heather Barr is a simple country girl living in North Carolina alongside her husband, Jason. They have two Blue Heeler pups, two cats, and eight chickens. Heather enjoys photography, spending time in the garden, and curling up with a good book. Heather loves writing about her journey into the Father’s heart, as she faces her fears, discovers who she is in Christ, and learns how to live life in the Secret Place of His presence. You can follow her daily journal at Life in the Secret Place, and connect with her on Instagram and Facebook.


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