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“You enter the extraordinary by way of the ordinary.” ~Frederick Buechner

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Journal with Impact: Personal Reflection Devotional Journeys

Workshop: Six Conversations for Writing Creative Journals

“It is a fantasy because fantasy is the natural, the appropriate, language for the recounting of the spiritual journey and the struggle of good and evil in the soul.”
Ursula Le Guin

Spiritual Journey

All writers are well aware of the treasure that can be found during research with journals and diaries and letters, especially for memoir and historical genres. But this area of reading offers gems that can impact all our work. Regardless of our particular field, reading journals, diaries, and letters can give us perspective, expertise, and courage.

When we read and dialogue with a spiritual classic, we gain perspective that we can apply to our present spiritual journeys and struggles.

Henri Nouwen is a writer who often challenges me in his books, causing me to wrestle with my beliefs and choices, solitude and service. Yet it is in his personal diaries, such as The Genesee Diary, that I am more ready to listen without argument or questions. Why? Because in some ways reading his diary or letters is a form of eavesdropping that is restorative. He shares his heart. And builds a bridge of communication. His feelings are true to him and cannot be dismissed just because I don't happen to understand them.

Not only am I neither a man, nor a monk, nor have I experienced hardly any lifestyle close to Nouwen’s, but I still have this opportunity to understand him by these very personal writings.

Reading private thoughts gives a clearer perspective heart to heart that helps bypass arguments and stereotypes. By listening to real live personalities, we can respond to others with more honesty and grapple with real-life situations with compassion.

Action Steps:

1.     Make a short list of people in your faith or your field who have intrigued you. Then look to see if any wrote letters or diaries or journals. Choose the one that you are the most curious about—whether positively or negatively.

2.     Choose a style of study that you haven’t tried yet, but keep it conversational.

3.     What questions do you have before you begin reading?

4.     What questions do you still have afterward?

Share: Whose journal did you read that gave you fresh insight? What surprised you?

                                                       Read deep, marcy

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"The Seeker" Rachel Marks | Content Copyright Marcy Weydemuller | Site by Eagle Designs
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