On May 23, 2017 at our local church, I held our first ever journaling workshop. The subject of this workshop was “Journaling as a Form of Worship.” I love to worship our Lord, Jesus Christ. My whole life is focused on Him, and pleasing Him. He is what I am about. So, naturally, I want to worship Him through my music and art. That is what my first coloring book, “The Foundation: A Devotional Collection of Black and White Images to Draw, Color, and Inspire Your Worship” published in March 2017 is about. It’s about sharing the artwork from my personal journal, and hopefully inspiring others to create.
Some people have preconceived ideas about what journaling is. So, they don’t participate in it. My intention for the workshop was to get people involved in creating, and worshiping God through ways they didn’t see before. Journaling has unlimited possibilities! For those of you who missed it; Here are my notes, book list, videos, and inspiration from my class.
Let’s begin with definitions. So, we can all begin on the same page:
- a daily record, as of occurrences, experiences, or observations:
She kept a journal during her European trip.
- a newspaper, especially a daily one.
- a periodical or magazine, especially one published for a special group, learned society, or profession: the October issue of The English Journal.
- a record, usually daily, of the proceedings and transactions of a legislative body, an organization, etc.
- a daybook.
- (in the double-entry method) a book into which all transactions are entered from the daybook or blotter to facilitate posting into the ledger.
- Nautical. a log or logbook.
verb (used without object)
- to write self-examining or reflective journal entries, especially in school or as part of psychotherapy:
From the book Called to Worship by Vernon M. Whaley: “What is worship? What do we mean when we use the word? Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary (11th ed.) defines worship as ‘reverence offered a divine being’ as well as the ‘act of expressing such reverence.’ So, we are to show God reverence. But how? What acts demonstrate reverence for God? Does the Bible offer guidance?
In Scripture, the Hebrew word for worship is shachah, meaning ‘to kneel, stoop, prostrate oneself, or throw oneself down, in reverence.’ Closely related are the Hebrew words shabach,‘ to shout to the Lord’; yadah, ‘to worship with uplifted hands’; halal, ‘to celebrate God foolishly and boast about His attributes (love, mercy, goodness, etc.)’; and tehillah, ‘to sing spontaneous songs of praise.’
In the Greek, the word for worship proskuneo, means to express deep respect or adoration- by kissing, with words, or by bowing down. Associated words include epaineo, ‘to commend or applaud’; aineo, ‘to praide God’; and sebomai, ‘to revere.’
That’s a lot of words, with diverse definitions. And these aren’t the only biblical terms that relate to worship. Strong’s exhaustive Concordance offers a wealth of information regarding the various words for worship and its synonyms. But how can we make all of this information relevant? When we tie all of these words and their meanings together, what does it all boil down to?
Love. Deuteronomy 6:5 says, ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.’ (NKJV). Jesus repeated this command three times in the New Testament (Matt 22:37, Mark 12:30, Luke 10:27). Why? Because it’s what we were made for- to love God. And if we are in love with Him, we will naturally want to worship Him (shachah). He’s done so much for you and me that it only seems right to fall down before Him (cagad), to throw up our hands in surrender (yadah), to sing His praises (zamar)-to worship Him.”
From the book Enter His Courts with Praise by Andrew E. Hill: “Genuine worship is a quest for God not out of obligation or duty but freely and earnestly in gratitude for his goodness. Hence, the worship of the God-seeker is unfeigned, not like the worship of those who honor the Lord with their lips while their hearts remain cold and distant… This desire to seek , know, and worship the Lord of Hosts may be prompted by distress and trouble, as in the laments of the psalmist, or by love and adoration in thanksgiving for God’s goodness to the righteous. In either case the God-seeker’s quest is not in vain because the Lord responds to those who pursue him, giving pardon for sin, the blessing and hope of salvation, and deliverance from enemies.”
Philippians 4:8 (NIV) 8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
Why do we journal?
- To reflect on an event
- To record our thoughts and feelings
- To remember an inspiring moment
- To draw near to God as a form of worship
How can we use journaling as a form of worship?
- Draw near to God, spend time with Him, talking to Him and praying.
- Think about these things; whatever is true, noble, right, lovely, and admirable.
- Listen to music and reflect upon what the Lord is doing in your life.
- Read your Bible and seek wisdom and clarity from His Word.
You don’t have to be an artist to journal:
Alternatives to drawing in your journal
- Print words or pictures from your computer
- Take pictures out of books cut or copy
- Remove inspirational items from magazines and newspapers
- Odds & Ends; found pieces and mementos
- Memento defined: A keepsake, a reminder of an event, or person.
- Found books/guided journals/repurposed books
- Write words from your Bible or inspiration
- Glue or tape items into your book
Types of written journals/uses:
- Bible verses
- Song lyrics
Inspirations about God, what moves you?
- Prayer lists
- To Do/ Grocery lists
- Found objects
Ways to inspire your worship:
- Read your Bible
- Listen to audio Bible
- Listen to worship music
- Listen to a sermon/Bible teaching. What is the Spirit saying to you?
Where we find our favorite supplies:
- Thrift Stores
- Yard Sales
- Free discarded books at the library
- Found objects
- Oriental Trading Company
- Michaels craft store
- JoAnne’s craft store
- Hobby Lobby craft store
A list of our favorite supplies:
Available for purchase on our website at: www.TriciaJacobs.com
- Sharpie Pens and markers
- Prismacolor colored pencils
- Prismacolor watercolor pencils
- Sargent watercolor crayons
- Watercolor paints
- Acrylic gesso
- Decorative tape
- Paper punches
Suggested reading list for inspiration:
A list of books for purchase available on our website at: www.TriciaJacobs.com
- The One Year Bible New Living Translation
- The One Year Book of Hymns
- Called to Worship by Vernon M. Whaley
- Enter His Courts with Praise by Andrew E. Hill
- Creative Lettering and Beyond by Gabri Joy Kirkendall, Et Al.
- Zentangle 9 Color with Mixed Media by Suzanne McNeill
- Hand Drawn Lettering by Max Marlborough
- Ideas & Inspirations for Art Journals & Sketchbooks by Suzanne McNeill
- Outline Alphabets 100 Complete Fonts by Dan X. Solo
- The Lettering Book of Alphabets by Noelene Morris
- Personal Geographies by Jill K. Berry
- Artist’s Journal Workshop by Cathy Johnson
- Get Lettering by Rian Hughes
- 1000 Artist Journal Pages Dawn DeVries Sokol
- The Foundation: A Devotional Collection of Black and White Images by Tricia Jacobs
- Write Your Story. Write and Tell Your Story by Tricia Jacobs
There are also many videos on YouTube about art journaling. Here are three of our favorites, which we found very inspiring:
Artist Dawn DeVries Sokol speaks about why she journals:
93 year old Edith shares about her prayer journal:
Artist Suzanne McNeill shares her personal journal and sketchbook:
May your journal serve as a reminder of God’s mercy, faithfulness, answers to prayers, and his unfailing goodness!
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