Thursday, September 9, 2021

Tips for Quick and Easy Bible Journaling

This is my final post in the Back to Basics series from my September 2021 Bible Journaling workshop. We started with a reminder why we need God's Word and then covered some simple ways to fill our mind with His Word. In this final installment, I'll be giving you simple tips for Bible journaling when you only have a short amount of time. 

Plan a time for Bible journaling. 

You’re more likely to do something if you add it to your schedule. Even though I teach Bible journaling classes, I don’t journal in my Bible every day. In fact, my recent goal has been to just journal once a week. You might only be able to set aside time once a month. That’s okay! Maybe even consider inviting a friend or two to journal with you! Now that you've set a time, let's get into the Word. 

Start with the Word: Decide on a passage or verse you want to journal

  • Pick a verse from your scripture writing notebook if you have one. 
  • Pick a passage from a recent sermon, devotional, or podcast you read or listened to recently.
  • Just pick a favorite verse.
  • Use a worship song as inspiration. Look up the lyrics and find a verse that goes with it.
  • Start with a printable or other ephemera and choose a verse based on that. For example, you could pick the die cut from the Back to Basics kit that says walk by faith which would take you to 2 Corinthians 5:7.

Decide how you want to illustrate your page

  • Pick out any ephemera pieces you might want to use or think of something you can draw that goes with the verse. If I were journaling 2 Corinthians 5:7 using the ephemera from the Back to Basics kit, I would pick the walk by faith die cut from the kit as well as the shoes then maybe add some extra embellishments like some of the hearts, the notes card, a tab for the top of my page and the word faith from the word strips to use on my tab.
  • You can keep it simple with just the ephemera pieces (or drawing) or decide if you want to add a background of some kind first. If your goal is to keep it simple, I suggest a wash of color with something like watercolors, Distress Oxide inks or gelatos. Another simple background I like is paint splatters. All you do is tap your brush around the page to splatter the paint and then your background is done!
  • Once you have your background done, glue down your ephemera pieces. Now you can consider whether you want to write a short prayer, or some notes related to the verse. You can also highlight or underline the verse on the page so that it stands out. 
  • That's it! It doesn't need to be complicated. Check out some of my simple Bible journaling pages below. Each of the pages shown uses just basic supplies; printables, stickers, washi tape, and watercolors.

Bonus tips!

Don't have time to journal a full Bible page? Try one of these things instead!

  • Coloring Bibles are another way to get in the Word and use your creativity without having to spend all the extra time planning out your page. Just open to a page that already has an illustration, grab some colored pencils, and get coloring! Use the time you are coloring to meditate on the verse.
  • Another option would be Bible coloring books that just have different Bible verse illustrations, or even a Bible coloring app that you color digitally.
  • Consider micro journaling – this could be journaling on a small note card, Memory Dex card, in a tiny Bible or just keeping your journaling to a smaller portion of the page in your journaling Bible or even a regular Bible.

I hope these simple tips help give you some ideas of how to daily fill your mind with more of God’s Word. Take some time to look over the list from this post and choose one or two that you want to try. Then look through your supplies and journal a page in your Bible or notebook. Use the list of suggested verses below if you need some ideas of where to look. You can also use the Back to Basics playlist for inspiration and to focus your mind on the Truth while you journal.                                                                                                                                                                

Back to Basics: Suggested Bible Verses

  • 2 Timothy 3:14-17
  • Psalm 119:10-11
  • Psalm 119:105
  • Proverbs 3:1-2
  • 2 Timothy 2:15
  • Hebrews 4:12
  • John 8:32
  • John 1:1
  • Romans 8:1-10
  • Psalm 1:1-6
  • Psalm 12:1-7
  • Colossians 3:16
  • Proverbs 3:5-6
  • 2 Corinthians 5:7
  • Psalm 86:11
  • Ephesians 6:17
  • Ezekiel 36:26
  • Psalm 51:10
  • Psalm 40:8
  • Romans 12:2
  • Proverbs 3:3
  • Jeremiah 29:11-14
  • Matthew 6:21
  • Proverbs 7:1-3

For the other parts of the lesson, see these posts: 

For Back to Basics part 1, check out the post Why We Need God's Word

For Back to Basics part 2, check out the post 10 Tips for Getting More of the Word in Your Daily Life

Looking for the workshop kit? Digitals for the kit as well as a limited number of physical kits are now available in the Anchored Hope Prints shop

10 Ways to Get More of the Word into Your Daily Life

This post is a continuation of Back to Basics: Why We Need God's Word. This is part two from the lesson I taught at a recent Bible journaling workshop where I talked about why God's Word is important and simple ways we can get in the Word. If you're following along with the workshop lesson, be sure to read that post first. 

Now that we've discussed the importance of the Word and the Good News, let’s discuss some ways to get more the Word into your daily life. These are simple tips to keep God’s Word in your mind throughout the day. They’re not meant to replace reading and studying the Bible, but I hope that these tips can give you some practical ways to fill your mind with the truth.  

10 Ways to Get More of the Word into Your Daily Life

  1. On your phone a lot? Put an image with a verse on your phone lock and/or home screen(s) so you see it every time you pick up your phone [check out these free phone lock screens from Well-Watered Women].
  2. Maybe you work on a computer all day. You can also put a verse image on your computer background to help remind you of God’s Truth as you work. 
  3. Play uplifting worship music throughout the day. I find that the more I listen to worship music, or even just Christian music with a positive message, the better I feel throughout the day. You don’t have to be actively listening or worshipping in church to benefit from music. Just having it playing in the background is one more way that you are hearing God’s truth. [Check out the playlist I made for this month’s workshop here on Spotify]
  4. Strategically place verse cards around the house so that you see them often. Some suggestions might be your bathroom mirror, on the fridge, by your bed, next to your computer, or near the kitchen sink. These can be just notecards that you write a verse out on or printable verse cards. [Check out these scripture card sets available at Anchored Hope Prints]
  5. If you would rather something that blends in a little more with your décor, consider scripture art prints or other home décor pieces placed around your home. [Check out wall art prints available at Anchored Hope Prints]
  6. Leave your Bible open on a table where you will walk by it throughout the day. Take a moment to stop and read a verse or two whenever you can.
  7. Listen to a devotional podcast while you’re doing something else. One of my favorites is First 15.
  8. Start a scripture writing plan. It’s simple, just write out one verse per day and before you know it, you’ll have a notebook full of God’s word written in your own handwriting. You can find many writing plans online with a simple internet search. Some are topical, others are focused on a specific book of the bible. You could even just use the You Version verse of the day.
  9. Set up notifications for Bible apps like the You Version Bible app so that you see a pop up of the daily verse.  
  10. Consider the pages/people you are following on social media. Are you seeing messages that point you to the Word or the World? I know most of us love a good silly cat video or maybe you like watching hair and makeup tutorials but try to also have some Christian social media sources that remind you of the Truth. Some of my favorites are Well Watered Women and Illustrated Faith, but there’s so many out there! I also want to note that it’s okay to unfollow someone if their content isn’t right for you. This is especially true if certain people or accounts post things that make you upset or make you feel like you can’t measure up.
Did you notice how none of these tips mention Bible journaling? That's on purpose! I want to give you simple ways to fill your mind with the Word, that anyone can do and don't require much time. However, since my main goal is to help you get into the Word through Bible journaling, my final post in this series will cover tips for quick and easy Bible journaling. 

For the other parts of the lesson, see these posts: 

For Back to Basics part 1, check out the post Back to Basics: Why We Need God's Word

For Back to Basics part 3, check out the post Tips for Quick and Easy Bible Journaling

Looking for the workshop kit? Digitals for the kit as well as a limited number of physical kits are now available in the Anchored Hope Prints shop

Back to Basics: Why We Need God's Word

This month I taught a workshop called Back to Basics. We discussed the importance of getting in the Word as well as simple tips to fill our minds with more of God's truth. I will be sharing the lesson in three parts here on the blog. First up is the basis for the lesson which is all about why we need the Word in the first place. 

I can’t start a lesson on simple ways to get into the Word without first mentioning why I believe this is important. This quote sums up so well the importance of the Word: 

“The Bible. It’s more than a playbook or a piece of literature. It’s more than the best-selling book in the world. It’s more than a paper weight or a decoration on our shelves. It’s the living, breathing, inspired Word of God. (The Journey: Turn the Page by gracespring Bible Church, page 2)” 

We need the Word because it's the way God speaks to us. His Word changes lives! 

If we’re truly going to go back to basics, we need a refresher on the good news of the gospel. The gospel isn’t just for those who need salvation. We all need to preach the gospel to ourselves often, so we don’t forget what the Lord has done for us and how it changes who we are. Here's a brief explanation of the gospel. 

We are all born into a sinful and broken world (Romans 3:23). Because of sin, we all deserve death and eternal separation from God (Romans 6:23). If this was the end of the story, we would be lost and without hope. But God provided a way where there was no way! His name is Jesus! Jesus, the only one to live a perfect life free of sin, chose to take your sin upon himself and die in your place (Romans 5:8). Isn’t that great news! But it doesn’t end there! “It was through His suffering and death that our sins were paid for through His blood. Then He rose again three days later to defeat sin, hell, and the grave (The Journey: Embrace the Life by gracespring Bible Church, page 14).” There’s nothing you can do to earn salvation. He offers it as a free gift. All you have to do is have faith and believe (Ephesians 2:8-9). Once you accept this gift, God adopts you into His family, not just to save you from hell but so you can have a relationship with him now. 

Do you believe this good news!? If so, why do so many of us often neglect to make the God’s life changing Word a daily part of our lives? What if we could fill our minds with more of God’s truth in simple ways that don’t require hours of “quiet time”? Now, let me be clear, there is absolutely value in deeper study of the scriptures (we’ll dive more into that next month). But I think it’s also common to be stuck in a cycle of shame for neglecting what we think good Christians are supposed to do. Oftentimes this shame keeps us from ever opening a Bible. Let’s take away the shame and stop making reading our Bibles something we just check off a to-do list but never let the message penetrate our hearts. He is calling you to just come into His presence. All you have to do is open your Bible and let Him speak to you through His Word. 

If you’ve accepted Him as your Savior, then praise him today! Take a few minutes to listen to the song My Jesus by Anne Wilson [watch lyric video here]. If you are not sure, listen to the lyrics and let the message sink into your heart. He can change your life if you let him.

For the next part of the lesson, see these posts: 

For Back to Basics part 2, check out the post 10 Tips for Getting More of the Word into Your Daily Life

For Back to Basics part 3, check out the post Tips for Quick and Easy Bible Journaling

Looking for the workshop kit? Digitals for the kit as well as a limited number of physical kits are now available in the Anchored Hope Prints shop