notes from amidst a pile of journals

Posted: April 21, 2013 in Uncategorized

Tonight we take a temporary break from the prodigal story.  I expect to be back to that tomorrow.

This afternoon I started the process of packing to move.I have been sorting through closets, tossing stuff out, making “give this away” piles, and packing a few things too. 

In the process, I came across my notebooks.  OH BOY.  There are dozens of them.  Spiral notebooks crammed full of my thoughts in bad handwriting.  Rambling paragraphs, poems, questions, sections of scripture analyzed.  Years and years and years worth.  They have month and day marked on the entries, but not years, which makes it interesting.  And clearly in some cases I have written in one, left it lying around for 5 years, and then picked it up and used it again.  So random. 

I have never journaled REGULARLY in notebooks.  That is generally saved for special occasions.  There are some from camping retreats, some from big group Christian events.  One contains my reactions from my first 3 visits to JPUSA.  Another is from my 40 day fast.  They seem to be very “passage specific” if that makes sense.

I am going through them for this purpose:  while it is fun to review them and I imagine could be of interest to my kids or grandkids or whatever someday when I am gone, I don’t want to leave the yuck in there.  I mean, I don’t mind the stuff that shows I was a hot mess.  What I’m ferreting out is where I wrote down stuff that is other people’s mess, or my exceedingly hateful words about people as i struggled.  Stuff that could cause pain if it were found later.  That’s gotta go.  So i read and mostly save them, but sometimes tear some pages out. 

It makes me glad I’ve been writing, all these years.  It’s a fascinating journey, reading and remembering how He was working in my life at all these different points.  Watching the different ways I reacted to Him.  Seeing ways that I have been more on fire about some things then than I am now.  Seeing ways that I am so much more mature now than I was then.  Seeing how it has waxed and waned in me.  Seeing the common thread of His goodness strung throughout the journey. 

When I started this project, I thought I might just trash them all, to avoid the possibility of accidentally leaving something hurtful to be found.  But I’m finding so much treasure that I reckon I’ll just try to read carefully, and keep whatever I may. 

It’s like those standing stones that God challenged His people to leave, to mark certain points of their journey, right? 

Works for me.

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