This may sound shocking coming from a Christian blogger, but sometimes I struggle with my quiet time with God. I’m a hands-on person. Sitting still can be a challenge. I keep saying that “someday” I’ll be better. Maybe I won’t be so busy. I’m reminded of the popular phrase, “If the Devil can’t make you bad, he will make you busy.” Whether it’s sitting still and studying God’s word, or finding time to use the gifts and passions He gave you, it can be a challenge. I always say that I will be better “someday.” I’m finding my someday now.
But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” Matthew 6:33 ESV
Examples of the Struggle
No matter what my stage in life, it’s been a struggle to find my “someday,” that day where I consistently prioritize making time for God and time for the things he created me to be passionate about. Here are a couple examples…
12 Years in the Making
Last week I had a very rare opportunity to take my middle child to an art class. She learned to needle felt. I needle felted exactly once in my life, 12 years ago. I loved it and wanted to do more, but…here we are. It’s 12 years later and there are no needle felting projects complete, or even began for that matter. So last week I sat and watched my daughter needle felt. Since she wanted to do it, I had an excuse to purchase the materials to finally make it happen. (In fact, I just got a notification that the supplies are sitting in my mailbox right now. Yay!)
About 30 Years in the Making
Why do we do that do to ourselves? Why do we put everything off until “someday?” Here’s another example. When I was about 11, my mom gave me a calligraphy kit for Christmas. I was excited, but didn’t really know how to use it. I always thought it would be neat, but there it sat for years because. So this year I decided that my artistic daughter would probably like calligraphy. (Plus she could use a little help with her handwriting. This might inspire her.) I told her of my plan and found a cheap calligraphy set…2 months ago. For 2 months, I’ve been putting her off until X,Y, and Z got checked off my to-do list. But now, I’m tired of making excuses. My someday is here.I’ve been putting her off until X,Y, and Z got checked off my to-do list. But now, I’m tired of making excuses. My someday is here. Click To Tweet
I decided to embrace my someday by starting with calligraphy. My daughter and I tried our hand at calligraphy for the first time just a few days ago. It was so much fun that our littlest one insisted on doing her version of it as well. We weren’t great at it, but we enjoyed the time together. We all love thinking outside of the box and seeing our creations come to life. That’s why we were excited to try out these Ellie Claire art journals! They combine both the spiritual discipline of connecting with God and the artistic flair that I love!
“Retire from the world each day to some private spot…Learn to pray inwardly every moment.” A.W. Tozer as quoted in Illuminate Your Story, p.114
Journaling My Todays with Ellie Claire Art Journals
When the Ellie Claire Art Journals arrived, my girls started yelling, “Oooo. I want this one!” Thankfully I’m a bit bigger, and older, so I got my hands on one too! Here is my take on these beauties…
Illuminate Your Story
Illuminate Your Story Journal (Deluxe Signature Journals) reminds me of a precious antique storybook . It looks beautiful, timeless, and feels nice to the touch. You know that when you open it, there is going to be a story of great worth inside. The twist is that the story is your own! Illuminated letters are presented throughout the book from A-Z, with inspirational quotes and Bible verses. Illuminated letters are usually the first letters of a page. They are written fancifully, enlarged, and in color with a little bit of gold. Step-by-step instructions on how to create your own illuminated letters are presented. These letters are pretty and flowery, but I envision combining the original design with hints of what the journal entry will be about. When the book is complete you will be left with personal journal entries that include a touch of artistic flare–a true treasure!
The Illustrated Word
The Illustrated Word: An Illuminated Bible Coloring Journal (Deluxe Signature Journals) is another hardcover, thick paper, fine quality journal with many small, full color images from the Museum of the Bible. (I really want to go there!) While they follow an older traditional style, the color is rich and beautiful. They might inspire the person journal to write about the characteristics of God and famous Bible stories that touch the heart. Forty of these images have been recreated as coloring pages, so this is the journal my oldest daughter claimed first! Some of the pictures include images of Martin Luther, The Church of England Common Book of Prayer, and old parchment scrolls.
Of the three journals, Faith & Lettering Journal (Deluxe Signature Journal) (Deluxe Signature Journals) is the most modern looking. This journal has lined and dotted pages to write whatever you desire, but it also entices you with beautifully written verses. Then it gives you space, to practice, practice, practice your own beautiful lettering, following their Bible verse and inspirational quote examples. The book includes “pro tips” to teach you how to letter. I highly suggest this journal if you are wanting to learn hand lettering. It was created as “a safe place to practice prompts, try your hand at different styles, and grow in your lettering skills.” I like that it will serve as a permanent reminder that our lives are a process. Nothing is perfect the first time, but God refines us just as we refine our lettering.
Joy cannot be pursued. It comes from within. It is a state of being. It does not depend on circumstances, but triumphs over circumstances. It produces a gentleness of spirit a magnetic personality.” Billy Graham as quoted in Illuminate Your Story, p. 74
“Someday” is Here
With these journals, sitting still and contemplating the things of God is not as much of a challenge anymore. I have found my “someday” now. I look forward to the time I get to sit and create, imitating my Creator, while focussing on His word.
Let this be recorded for a generation to come, so that a people yet to be created may praise the Lord.” Psalm 102:18
What is your favorite way to have a quiet time? What are your favorite journals?