Bright Yellow Journal

Starting a new journal always feels a little bit nostalgic, or sacred, or sentimental? I’m not sure what the right word for it is but for some reason I always find myself on the first page writing about how it feels. Maybe I feel accomplished after finishing another journal or maybe it feels like I get a fresh start, like I get to close out one chapter and start another. Maybe I secretly just hope that the struggles and the heartache and the heavy prayer requests that filled some of the pages in my old journal won’t follow me to this new, pretty little yellow one. Because darkness can’t exist in a bright yellow journal, right? But I’ve gone through enough journals to know that isn’t true. I have a whole shelf of them with the same prayers, the same confessed sin, and the same hurts, just written out a little bit differently each time.

But what I also see stay the same is the One who’s on the other end of all my rambling. I see page after page of ways the Lord has been kind and merciful and faithful to me. I see page after page of provision, I see answered prayers, I see prayers that weren’t answered and thank God that they weren’t. I see Scripture that I’ve clung to, I see questions I’ve wrestled through and hard decisions that I’ve sought wisdom and discernment on. I see prayers on behalf of friends and family, I see my thoughts from both good and hard days, and I see notes from sermons and books and songs- words that I wanted to remember because they gave me strength and more faith when I needed it. I flip through the pages and I thank God for the ways He’s grown and shaped and challenged me since I wrote on the first page in September.

I see His consistency and I thank Him for listening, even when my written thoughts and prayers are a jumbled mess. So instead of naively thinking (or wishing) that a new journal will wipe away the pain that was written out in the last one, I’ll praise the Lord for His steadfastness. I’ll praise Him for not leaving or giving up on me when I “should’ve learned by now,” or when I “should be over it by now.” I’ll praise Him for holding all of my hopes and dreams and fears and disappointments gently and tenderly in the palm of His hand. And I’ll praise Him for the endurance, strength and hope that He’s building in me as I turn the page and continue to write out those same prayers, maybe just a little bit differently this time.

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