Saturday, January 31, 2015

Bible Journaling...Journey Toward God

In December I stumbled across a new (to me) idea that made my heart skip a beat.  Bible Journaling. The practice of bringing my faith into my crafty, creative life and my crafty, creative life into my faith has been familiar to me for awhile, but this was a little different somehow.  I've always highlighted or written my notes in my bible, but I've never doodled or drawn or added stickers and such. In December I was browsing Pinterest and found photos of bibles that were beautifully and meaningfully embellished.  Then I found a blog or two and then a whole community of bible journalers on Facebook.  Whoa! I was drawn in - literally.  I purchased a journaling bible.  It's an ESV translation with wide outer margins for notes and so much more.
Why did this discovery make my heart skip a beat?  God gave me a gift in my creativity.  This is just one more way that I can use it to draw closer to him and to then share the good news with others. When I work in my journaling bible I am spending more time in the Word. I process God's message(s) to me as I focus on a verse or passage. Sometimes I share my work, which I believe God uses to bless others.  One post of mine in the Bible Journaling group on Facebook reached over 1,000 people.  Go God!!!
A few Sundays ago I began bringing my journaling Bible to service and opened it during the sermon to take sermon notes. I sketched and wrote and doodled during the sermon.  It really helped me focus and hone in on specific messages for me.  Later during the week, I went back and read more and colored in my notes.  Again, a great way for me to further Bible study.
Writing, drawing, painting, coloring is not new.  Just type in "illuminated manuscript bible" in the google search bar.  This has been done for centuries.  A more recent endeavor is the Illuminated Saint John's Bible Project.  Creating art next to the Words of the ultimate Creator. It couldn't be more appropriate.  On the Saint John's Bible website, it is written, "it is our hope that the Scriptures will open up to you and that your journey here will become a journey toward God."  Aha moment.  Bible journaling is not about the art that gets created.  It's about the artist and the one who created her (or him).  It's about what happens in the process.  It's the Holy Spirit speaking, revealing, drawing me in as I listen and process and create and when guided, to share with others and pray the Holy Spirit works with and on them, too. Amen!  

Learn more about Bible Journaling:
St. John's bible project site
A great blog - Shanna Noel
Bible Journaling Community on Facebook
My Pinterest Board