Do You Even Journal Bro?


It’s really awesome if you journal everyday.  I think journaling is the coolest thing since journaling went from a nerdy noun to a muscular mountain-climbing verb.

It’s cool if you QT every morning at 5am and jetpack to your homeless shelter to drop off Wonder Bread and you pray six times a day for your neighbors and for your governor and for the 6000 people groups who don’t know Jesus.  Praise God that you’re on the Choir, Welcoming Team, Skit Team, Rap Team, and Origami Team.  I’m serious.  You’re a rockstar.

But: Not everyone has this sort of faith.

We’re different.  Some of us take notes; some of us process in our heads.  Some sing loudly; others soak in the lyrics.  Some can pray on the spot; others take a long time to get in the zone.  Some of us love the bare outdoors to commune with God; others need a podcast, a visual, a conversation, and coffee.

We can’t force journaling or 5am QT or “unceasing prayer” on every visitor in the pew nearest you.  It might work for some, but God’s imagination was not limited to the specific way you relate to Christ.  God’s own nature, the Trinity, proves it.  He is both infinitely diverse and profoundly one-on-one.

It’s better to celebrate these differences than define ourselves by them.  Better to have grace between the spaces than a death-grip to conform them. 

We’re uniquely wired to Christ in as many ways as there are people.  We can learn from each other.  Maybe I can journal once in a while, and you can put down the pen in a sermon.  Maybe I can step outside to see God in nature, and maybe you can hear this podcast with me.  Maybe we can pray together, and for once I’ll do it out loud.  And maybe we will sing together, and we’ll both go a little wild.

This is the body of Christ.  We are many; we are one.

There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.

— Ephesians 4:4-6

— J.S.

4 thoughts on “Do You Even Journal Bro?

  1. Life got easier when I quit trying to make everyone “do Christianity” my way! Not only was I able to extend “grace to the spiritually immature” (because they didn’t see the wisdom in my approach), but also began to receive grace from others. In this regard I love the principle of sowing and reaping!

    Thanks for the encouragement to let others be who God designed them to be – and allow this for ourselves as well!



  2. Bam! I was stoked to read Richard Foster state that journaling isn’t for everyone. I did it for two years and I really struggled. It’s ironic that I have a blog, I suppose. But it’s certainly different to me. It’s nice having the freedom not to measure up to other people’s standards. I can begin to imagine what it must have been like having Pharisees around back in the day.


    1. Hah yeah, it’s become the New Moral Standard (I sense a reality show). I personally do journal, but it’s so sporadic that it’s more like a seasonal word-flu that makes me vomit a crazy stream of consciousness. Fun times.


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