Welcome to Random Journal Day!
I am honored to have a special guest as our Featured Journal Keeper this month. I first heard of Lynn Morrissey when I found her words inscribed in an exquisite book which became one of my favorite journaling books ever written, “Love Letters To God :Deeper Intimacy through Written Prayer “. To my delight, my dear blogging friend and fellow journal keeper, Kel Rohlf– shared Lynn’s book and writing on her blog awhile back and I was thrilled to recognize the woman behind the words of the book that I had come to adore for the beautiful artwork, as well as the grace saturated prose that adorned the pages. Over time through comments and e-mail I have been blessed by this gracious journal keeper and gifted writer’s words. OK, seriously, I can only say that I have sat curled up on the couch with Lynn’s book and felt as if she absolutely was curled on the other side sharing her heart with me in person! Lynn is well known in the writing world but maintains a low profile as far as Social Media. She is a Certified Journal Facilitator, a dedicated wife, mother, and I just have to share this: a professional Bach singer! I hope that as you read and reflect on her words, written especially for us, that you are greatly encouraged and blessed in your own writing.
Lynn is giving away one copy of her book to one of YOU! I have a copy and treasure it. YOU will be blessed to own your own!
The best news is, if you have never participated in Random Journal Day before, you have a chance to join in with Lynn’s prompt if you’d like!
OK, actually the best news is , YOU could win this book in the Giveaway, but let’s not be so picky.
Enjoy the post, be sure and comment to enter the Giveaway, Link up your journal post, enter the Rafflecopter Giveaway.
Now, here’s Lynn!
A Leaf in Your History
“Each day in thy life is a leaf in thy history.” —Anonymous
“Oh that my words were written! Oh that they were inscribed in a book!” —Job 19:23 (NASB)
Autumn, my favorite time of year, is fast approaching—that season when trees shed their leaf-lacy shawls just as quickly as you and I shed the leaves of our lives—our days—one by one.
There is beauty in the brilliant blaze of autumn … and also, piercing poignancy. It arrives and departs all too quickly. Would that we could contain its color, its glory, its patchwork palette much longer. Yet despite our desire, autumn’s leaves flame, then fall, then fade away.
And so do our days.
But I know a way to preserve each leaf in my history. When I put pen to paper, I trace each leaf, and I leave a trace. My days may fall and float away, but their essence never does, because my moments are preserved, permanently penned in my journals.
My penchant for “leaf collecting” began when my mother gave me a small, lined diary one Christmas. Bound in red leather and clasped with a gold lock, this tiny tome became the repository of my pubescent ponderings. Now, flipping through its mostly blank pages, sprinkled sparsely with the jots and tittles of teen-hood, I find nothing of substance or consequence. Alas, I was not a faithful diarist; but the seeds were planted.
Mother herself watered those seeds in later years by her example. She loves to write, and journaling became her creative outlet for personal expression, a way to capture her trials and triumphs as a wife, mother, daughter, and friend, and as a lover of music, art, and literature. Her journals are a refuge, a place to make her mark in what sometimes can be the invisibility of homemaking. As her stash of journals grew, Daddy used to tease her, referring to her beloved blank books as “Fern’s infernal journals.” But it didn’t deter her from writing in them.
And all along I was watching from a distance, noticing the pure pleasure Mother found in reveling in reflective writing, in the time she took to appreciate her moments, her days, the leaves of her life. I love even now that I can pick a day, any day, and Mother can tell me in detail what happened, how she felt, and what she learned. She can immediately harvest her history.
I didn’t begin writing my own history in earnest until I was a young woman. Unlike Mother, I began journaling as an act of desperation. At my job, a coworker began lying to my boss, bent on getting me fired. Each day, in an effort to escape the pressure and preserve my sanity, I went to a nearby restaurant for lunch. While waiting to be served, I began venting about my troubles, in writing, on the blank pages of my planner. As a new Christian, though completely tongue-tied when I tried to pray aloud, I soon discovered my voice by pouring out my heart on paper, in what I came to call my “love letters to God.” The more I wrote to Him, the more peace I felt, as I invoked His power and presence in this untenable work situation. Not only did God answer my prayers for relief when my coworker resigned, but He gave me an amazing gift: a method of writing that allowed my effortless communication with Him. It is a gift that has kept on giving to me for decades.
Remember that each day of your precious life is a gift, a lustrous leaf in your history, a leaf you don’t want to lose. Will your life’s tree be full with the lush leafage of autumn, or like the winter tree, a stripped skeleton standing starkly against a sunless sky? Each day you live, you will make history, whether or not you journal about it. But will you remember its incredible intricacies—its pain and pleasure, barrenness and bounty, grief and grace, routine and richness? Will you have ready access to all of this?
You will if you have been faithful to pick up your journal and pen, day by day. Then in the days to come, you will have every opportunity to retrieve and recall, to reflect and recalibrate, because you will have left a tangible trace, a treasured testament of your life lived in the presence of God. And that will make all the difference.
Your invitation: On a blank journal page, draw a stick-figure tree with large leaves. On each leaf, write a one-word reminder of what happened yesterday or today. Then write to God about one leaf and your reaction to what occurred, how it affected your life, and how you learned from it. End by praising God for your life and the ability to record it, to inscribe it in your own personal history book, where it mingles meaningfully with the greater scope of His story.
The comment box: Please share what this post evoked for you, or share what you journaled in response to the invitation, above. Are you a regular journal-keeper? How has this practice changed your life? How has journaling drawn you closer to God?
*Please forgive me- in all of the busy-ness and excitement of RJD and our guest I forgot to share her Bio! Please forgive me and here it is:
Lynn D. Morrissey possesses the rare ability to probe beneath the surface, striking the heart of a subject, while sharing transparently from her own heart. She is passionate about journaling, through which God healed her of suicidal depression, alcoholism, and guilt from an abortion. She empathizes greatly with those who endure pain. A poetic word stylist, Lynn sculpts beautiful language with her pen, and is the author of Love Letters to God: Deeper Intimacy through Written Prayer and other books, contributor to numerous bestsellers, a Certified Journal Facilitator (CJF) for her ministry, Heartsight Journaling, AWSA speaker, and professional soloist. She lives with her husband Michael and college-age daughter Sheridan in St. Louis, Missouri. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
*You can check out Love Letters to God: Deeper Intimacy Through Written Prayer available wherever books are sold- and of course right here on Amazon!
Now Let’s LINK UP! Link you Random Journal Day Posts Here:
Linking this post at some great places:
3 D Lessons for Life: Thought Provoking Thursday
Create with Joy for Friendship Friday
Barbie’s Weekend Brew