“I will remember the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago. I will meditate on all your works and consider all your mighty deeds. Your ways, O Lord, are holy” (Psalm 77:11-13a).
Some of the most profound insights and experiences of life come out of prayer journaling. God wants to speak and give us insights into life. Journaling brings shape and order to everything that we do. I have been keeping a prayer journal for many years, and it helps keep my life in order and my priorities right. It helps me to remember what God has done. Truthfully, it has been one of the most important disciplines in my prayer life.
Prayer journaling is a way to daily dialogue with God and helps us to keep track of how God is speaking to us. Many insights into these Intercessors Arise letters come out of my prayer journaling with the Lord. I highly recommend it.
God wants to drop ideas and divine strategies into our hearts, but we soon forget them if we do not write them down and pray through them. Prayer journaling helps in numerous ways to keep us aware of what God is saying. It is a way to listen carefully because God is always speaking the truth to us, and many times it is in that still, small voice. Prayer journaling can help us to receive God’s truth instead of the lies of the enemy. Prayer is the most creative and important work that we can do, because all other work flows out of a life of prayer. It includes praise, giving thanks, intercession, petition, confession, listening, setting goals with God, and many other things. All of these dimensions of prayer can be part of our prayer journal.
Certainly prayer journaling will make our lives deeper and richer as we write down and remember what God is saying to us and what we are bringing before His throne regularly in prayer.
The Benefits of Prayer Journaling
“I remember the days of long ago; I meditate on all your works and consider what your hands have done” (Psalm 143:5).
- It helps us become personally accountable for what we hear from God – God speaks to us as we pray and meditate on His Word. When we journal, we can hold ourselves accountable as to what action steps He may want us to take or what He may want us to concentrate on in prayer over a period of time.
- It enhances our interaction with God – It can make God more real to us. He longs for fellowship with us, and journaling can deepen our intimacy with Him. It helps us to keep alert when we are tired.
- It opens our heart to God fully – I have personally found that I can open my heart to God in a deeper way when I journal my prayers, thoughts and ideas.
- It helps us to process our thoughts – It helps so much to think through what God is speaking or what we have been reading. When we write down our thoughts as we spend time with God, it helps us to process what we are going through in our lives.
- It reminds us of what God has spoken to us – We can so easily forget what God has spoken to us in our hearts or in His Word unless we write it down and remind ourselves later. So often in the Bible, we are told to remember the works and ways of God.
- It enables us to see patterns and get clarity – We may see strongholds in our lives that keep re-occurring. We may begin to see more clearly what God may be saying to us again and again or action steps of obedience we are to take.
- It enables us to record God’s faithfulness in the past – Prayer journaling helps us to meditate on memories of God’s faithfulness. David did a lot of prayer journaling. He wrote so many of the Psalms and continually remembered God’s blessings of the past.
- It helps us to remember what has happened – Prayer journaling has helped me so much in traveling, because I can go back and remember what has happened. Present day life is so complex. It is easy to forget what has happened and what we have learned.
- It changes our perspective – Prayer journaling is therapeutic. It is as if we are in a counseling session with God when we write out our thoughts and prayers to Him. Often our perspective changes as we begin to see things from His point of view.
- It leads to action – We often can take action as we process our thoughts through prayer journaling. Action steps become clearer because we are writing them down with God’s divine direction and help.
- It helps us to see the growth process in our life – Prayer journaling helps us to grow quickly because we are bringing the things that concern us to God. Through journaling, we see our life more clearly through God’s eyes.
How to Prayer Journal
My heart is stirred by a noble theme as I recite my verses for the king; my tongue is the pen of a skillful writer” (Psalm 45:1).
- Begin to write – There are so many ways you can journal. God will give you creativity. Some examples are prayers, poetry, your dreams, goals, burdens, delights, joys, Scripture, songs, letters or whatever God is saying to you.
- Journal regularly but not out of duty – You may journal daily, weekly or as often as you like. It is really up to you. It is important not to look at prayer journaling as a heavy burden or a duty. It’s a friend and will help you in life rather than weigh you down with another responsibility.
- Record prayer requests and date them – Then you can look back at how and when God answered your prayers. This will build your faith in prayer. It will also remind you of requests that need more intercession.
- Record God’s answers to your prayers – My husband did that while living overseas and saw how faithfully God answered his prayers. He recorded the dates of answered prayer. It is a testimony of God’s goodness.
- Watch for the progress you are making in your spiritual life – I always look back in my prayer journals and see how I change and develop spiritually from year to year. It helps me so much to see spiritual progress in my life and how God is working.
- Write out what God is saying to you – This is important so that you can look at your journal during the quiet seasons in your spiritual life. Ask yourself, “How is God personally revealing Himself to me?
- Write out key Bible verses that speak to you during times of prayer – God will guide you and help you in important times of decision-making by using Scripture.
I encourage you to make prayer journaling a regular part of your life. I believe that you, too, will find it to be an incredible blessing in your prayer and devotional life.
“Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always. Remember the wonders he has done, his miracles . . .” (1 Chronicles 16:11-12).
By Debbie Przybylski
Intercessors Arise International