Journaling & Confession

JOURNALING

Definition of Christian journaling: 

A place where we record the works and ways of God in our personal life. (includes the joys & struggles; answers & delays of prayers, wonders of devotional thought and the discouragement of faith; insights, dreams, goals, etc.) 

Practical Project: 

On the ½ piece of paper handed out, take 2 minutes to write down a recent spiritual observation (scripture, what God has done, question you have, worry, or victory). Simply fold the paper in half, put it in your Bible and don’t read it again until next Sunday!

Questions:

  • What are some examples of “journaling” in the Bible? 
  • Why are a number of Christians in history famous? 
  • What are some benefits in keeping and reviewing a personal journal?

How does one journal?

1. Start with a notebook and pen
2. Have VERY FEW rules
3. Avoid editing
4. Start with observations on scripture
5. Review it after a period of time
6. Remember journaling can be fruitful at ANY level of involvement

CONFESSION

What is Confession?

Confession as a spiritual discipline involves confessing our sins to God and to others. 

Key Verse:

Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.        James 5:16 (NIV)

Practical Project:

No “normal” project – just the request that if you have silently sought God’s forgiveness over time and not experienced a sense of release (forgiveness), that you would confess that sin to a trusted Christian (and allow them to ask questions and examine you). Remember you have not exhausted your resources & God’s grace with private confession

Questions: 

  • Key Scriptures: James 5:16: confess (disclose to another), your (our own personal), sins (wrongs), to one another (not just God) Proverbs 28:13 John 20:23
  • Have you ever experienced “a release” after confessing to a person that you had not experienced in private confession to God alone? 
  • Why did you finally confess to a person in addition to God?
  • What are the major difficulties (historically & practically) with this discipline?
  • Requirements for true confession (Alphonsus Liguori)

1. An examination of conscience
2. Sorrow (not emotion but deep regret at having offended God)
3. A determination to avoid sin in the future