A Praying Life
12/16/13 at 08:33 AM 1 Comments

Revisiting 21 Days Journey

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Photo: Flickr/Damian Gadal - Creative Commons

At the beginning of this year, I talked about journaling. It is not a new concept and many variations and purposes for journaling exist. Some keep food journal to help them focus on losing weight, some to keep track of places they have visited, or people they have met, some to help them improve writing abilities i.e. writers, authors, songwriters etc. Oprah Winfrey introduced many to the "gratitude journal". There is scientific evidence that journaling helps improve immune system, mental clarity, decrease PTSD symptoms etc. The journaling that I'm introducing to you is similar to that of a gratitude journal yet different. It can be applied both naturally and spiritually. The following is a repost (with some minor changes) of the original 21 days journey, I call it a journey rather than journal and you will understand if you take this challenge. Please read in entirety.

I have worked in the social work field for over 28 years and in the counseling field for over 12 years with individuals and families struggling with family problems, emotional problems, and relationship, separation, loss and grieving issues. One of the first things I do is ask each client to make a commitment of journaling for 21 days.

The journaling process has three requirements. The first is to write daily about what you are feeling. Many individuals have problems dealing with their emotions. We become accustomed to hiding our feelings, denying them, keeping them to ourselves. We fear being misunderstood or rejected by others. I will often give them a list of feeling words to help them. For example happy, hurt, sad, lost, lonely, afraid, unloved, loved, confused, frustrated, angry, comforted, blessed, and safe. The journaling is about being truthful and facing whatever confronts you.

The second part is to examine and identify why you feel the way you feel. Often people have no idea of what they are feeling or why they feel the way, they do. Their lives are in such turmoil until it feels like a seesaw of emotions, a ball of strings all tangled up. Journaling help you to find answers and identify the root of the problem. What is happening in your life to make you feel that way? When is your first remembrance of having that feeling? What triggers that feeling? How do you react in response to that feeling?

The third part is to write one thing that you are grateful for that day. The reason for this part is to maintain balance. It is to help you understand no matter how difficult life is now there is always a reason to be grateful. You have to look for it, not overlook it. This part is to identify and develop coping skills that will strengthen you. A little rain helps us to appreciate the sunshine. You must always have hope even in hopeless time. This part shows how you use coping skills and gives the foundation to build on.

The client is instructed to do the following: find a quiet place each day and spend no less than 30 minutes journaling. A place with out distractions, loud noises etc. Listen a few minutes to something that is quiet, soft, soothing thus allowing their spirits, mind and body to come to a resting place. Do not read the previous day entries. The plan is to meet with the client on the seventh day and read aloud the entries and together we explore the meaning of what they have written. Check back in seven days for the next segment of this post.

It is my belief to achieve healing you must deal with the whole man. The mind, body and spirit of that person must be healed. This process can easily be applied to helping us on our spiritual journey. Being a Christian does not exempt us from hurts, disappointments, anger or misunderstanding. Having Christ as our savior does give us grace, help and strength to deal with everything that confronts us. Often, Christians are in denial of feelings such as anger, bitterness, jealousy, and unforgiveness. What I have learned is that feelings are neither right nor wrong. They are just what we feel. How we handled those feelings depend on our relationship with our Heavenly father. Psalm 32:2 KJV Blessed is the man unto whom the LORD imputeth not iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile.

There is no need to deny our feelings to the father because he already knows. We stand naked before God and nothing is hidden. It is therefore important to acknowledge and seek his wisdom and help with those things that we struggle with. Paul puts it this way: For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do Romans 7:18-19.

I invite you to take this 21-day journey with me. I promise that it will be a life-changing event and a good way to take inventory of your spiritual life. You will gain new skills and new insights into your life along this journey. Lord, willing I will do a follow up on Day seven. Stay tuned. BTW, if anyone started this process in January please let me know and I encourage you to join me again.

SPEAK THE ANSWER NOT THE PROBLEM. THE ANSWER IS IN THE WORD OF GOD. Heavenly father we come in the name of your son Jesus thanking you for the power of the shed blood of Jesus and your holy word. Father we apply your blood over our mind, will, soul, emotions and body today. We receive the mind of Christ and invite the Holy Ghost to shine his life into our inner man and reveal to us that which the enemy wants to hide. Give us courage to see, and strength to change. We exchange our weakness for your strength. We commit our ways and thoughts to you that you will establish us. We present ourselves to you mind, body, soul and spirit as a living sacrifice. God mold us, make us, and shape us into your image. Teach us to be quiet before you that we may hear what your spirit is saying, to lay in your presence until Christ is formed on the inside and your glory shine upon our face. We renew our vow to love you more day by day. We worship you and bow down before you our God, lord and king reign forever in our lives. All power belongs to you.


I LEARNED TO REST http://www.broadjam.com/artists/songs.php?artistID=13273&mediaID=178280&pg=2

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