Since the 5th grade, when I was baptized, I have on again off again kept a prayer journal. I was pretty consistent all through grade school, but when I got to college my need for a prayer journal became sporadic.
In fact, before I got ready to move I weeded through all my old prayer journals…It was so interesting to see what my worries were, how immature I was in some ways, as well as how mature I was in some ways.
I somehow lost my prayer journal that I bought in December somewhere between Texas and Alabama. Which, this truly saddens me because I had some neat revelations about God in those 3 months time of December and February.
All that to say, in C-group (small group) somehow I kept thinking about my love of writing down my prayers and seeing how they are answered through scripture, song, people, events,…or whatever God chooses to use to work in my life. I also began to think how I needed a new one.
At the Orange Conference I went to in April, they kind of made fun of and gave permission to ministers to not feel guilty if they didn’t have a prayer journal. It doesn’t work for everyone,..
But it works for me.
Old habits die hard, and this is actually a healthy habit I don’t mind keeping.
So, the week before BigStuf I started out on adventure to find a new prayer journal. I am kinda picky (I know your surprised…) about my prayer journals, so it took a few trips to a few places to find exactly what I wanted.
BigStuf was the first “outing” for it to be used other than at my bedside.
I have been back from BigStuf just over a week now, and needless to say, the experience was not disappointing. It lived up to everything everyone said it would be.
I feel like much of what was said was taken to heart.
To give you a taste of what struck me from BigStuf, I am actually going to let you in to a few pages of my journal…
Below is some of my blurbs and notes from the speakers, as well as, a prayer from quiet time. I feel like this may give you a better feel for the whole experience and what I got out of it than me writing about it. Sorry if it doesn’t make sense to you,…it is random thoughts and phrases from my brain and speakers. However, when I read them they make perfect sense to me, and I am so glad this habit dies hard for me because I can easily pick back up on that thought because I documented it!
“Finally, brothers, 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. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.”
Think about something good, then do good.
Controlling thoughts vs. controlling circumstances
Will of God:
Providential vs. Moral
No commands vs. Personal will of God
1- Family & Church —> same team
2- Everyone is influenced by family
3- You have a picture of what family looks like.
4- No model family
5- No perfect picture, just broken people.
6- Ministry of reconciliation
As I sit among hundreds of teens having quiet time on the beach…I feel the greatness that is you. Let this generation rise up to take their place with selfless faith. Into the darkness you shine. Out of the ashes have them rise. You are greater, you are stronger, you are higher, you are healer, awesome in power, and we can call you ‘our God.’ “
Life is good —–> God is good
We base our judgments on God just as how we feel.
Our relationship with God is best measured when you are not happy…
“Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, ‘Sit here while I go over there and pray.’ He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee along with him, and he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, ‘My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.’ Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, ‘My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.’ “
-yet not…my will but yours
Why? (stuck) to What? (moving forward)
“For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
A masterpiece, handcrafted, original
He chose to use us.
God always chooses availability over ability…everytime.
“The Lord, the Lord your God is one.”
Beginning with an end in mind.
Fight for the heart– Deuteronomy 6
Make it personal.
Create a rythm.
Widen the circle.
What’s the next step for you?
Everyone takes a step.
Zacchaeus takes an economic step.
“One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: “Aren’t you the Christ? Save yourself and us!”
-Criminal’s step was just acknowledging that Jesus was Christ.
What’s your next step?