One of the most significant resources in my recovery toolbox is prayer journaling. It’s a powerful way to spend quiet time with yourself and the Lord. I’ve experienced tremendous success with it and have grown into a better me. I cannot express enough how miraculous it is to see how God answers my requests. As well as to look back on my spiritual growth.
God Answers Prayers
My biggest reward is my husband. So, naturally, I prayed for this man in many ways. But, let me tell you, he was not easy to catch! However, I faithfully wrote every night in my journal. Of course, I acknowledged God’s will in my prayers. So that I would be protected if he was not the one, but I knew it was him. God answered my prayers but blessed me with so much more than I asked.
Looking back at that prayer journal now is a blessing. It amazes me to see how I was praying for things I didn’t realize at the time would manifest into the gifts that I have today. So I highly encourage you to use prayer in your recovery plan. It’s the perfect way to focus on sobriety.
How to Start Writing a Prayer Journal
First and foremost, you need a prayer journal. Second, you need to choose a prayer time and make that routine. Set the alarm on your phone and label it if that keeps you accountable. Several different prayer journaling styles exist. So it would help if you determined what prayer journal idea speaks to you.
For example, do you prefer journal prompts for guided prayer? Or do you like traditional lined journal pages? Do you want journal sections? Or to use a journal template? Additionally, do you want to include daily devotionals in your prayer journal entry? Answering these questions is vital in discovering your communication style.
Once you’ve selected your prayer notebook, it’s time to start praying. You can use fun glitter gel pens to add sparkle to your pages. Or you can subscribe to a traditional pen. Some people decorate with stickers, and others use cool bookmarks. So choose your ink, and let’s start today!
What are the Benefits of Prayer Journaling?
I’ve experienced seven incredible benefits that I’m excited to share. My sincerest hope is that you can celebrate successes in your spiritual life and come back and share your significant accomplishments and wins with me!
Developing a journaling habit is a great way to keep track of your progress and personal growth. Furthermore, it establishes a healthy prayer life, which gives you a higher chance of remaining sober. Also, a bonus, there is no kneeling involved with prayer journaling! Do you have a favorite bible verse? Keeping it in your prayer journal helps set the tone of your journey.
Benefit #1: You Discover Who You Truly Are
Writing in your prayer journal allows you to be vulnerable and truly honest with yourself. You might be amazed at what pours out of you when you allow yourself that space. I’ve certainly been. Documenting what you want and what you don’t want enables you to see what is important to you and what no longer serves you.
Benefit #2: You Commit To Faithfully Praying
I find that prayer journaling ensures that I will spend time with God. Too many seasons of my life have passed without prayer. It became evident when I realized how better things would have been if God had been at the center of my life.
God’s faithfulness is unfailing. Therefore, keep prayer at the center of your recovery and engage in daily prayer. God-answered prayers are magical reminders that you’re never alone and that you’re blessed.
Benefit #3: You Guide Your Purpose
Another remarkable benefit of prayer journaling is that you get to guide your purpose. You get to decide what is important enough in your life to communicate with God. So be specific with details when communicating your wants and needs.
For example, don’t simply write, “God, please keep me sober.” Instead, try, “Lord, thank you for keeping me secure in my sobriety and removing temptations from my path.” Do you see how that statement expresses gratitude before making a request? That is my usual method of praying. Practice using that format when seeking things from God in your prayers.
Benefit #4: You Get to See How God Moves in Your Life
Without a doubt, seeing how God works in your life is miraculous. Also, reflecting on past prayer journal entries always surprises me. When you vocalize your prayers, you don’t remember all the details. So it’s fantastic to see the exacts of what you’ve asked for and what God has delivered.
Benefit #5: You Develop an Intimate Relationship With God
Dedicating time to sit down with the Lord in prayer develops an intimate closeness. You realize through your writing how much you can depend on God. Additionally, you become more aware of yourself and your purpose each day. Keeping prayer in your daily routine helps you feel better.
As time progresses, you see your spiritual progress and its healing. God’s unfailing love in delivering us from the self-imposed hells we placed ourselves in is astounding. So pray without ceasing, friends. Active prayer life has kept me closer to the straight and narrow.
Benefit #6: You Remember to Pray for Others
How many of you are faithful in praying for others? I’m sure there are many of you. However, before prayer journaling, I didn’t say them consistently. So I wasn’t faithful in praying for my loved ones. As a mother, that is a frightening admission.
It’s not that I didn’t want to pray, but I’m easily distracted, as many of us are. Furthermore, I have ADHD and find it easier to focus my attention when I write. Praying for the people you love and yourself is essential for spiritual health. Creating a prayer list and keeping it in your journal helps develop a prayer habit.
Also, don’t hesitate to take prayer requests. Sometimes people make prayer requests in their social feeds. So instead of scrolling by, dedicate some time to pray for your friend.
Benefit #7: You Keep Yourself Accountable in Recovery
Keeping a prayer journal is the ultimate reflection of accountability. You get to be specific with what you want in your sobriety. Asking the Lord to aid you in accountability sets you up for a better chance of success.
Placing God at the center of my recovery has been my saving grace. I’m most consistent with prayer journaling. So I highly recommend this method of prayer.
Because you’re committing to daily communication with the Lord, it keeps you grounded and focused on your sobriety goals and relapse prevention plan.
Don’t Know How to Start a Prayer?
There isn’t a set way to start a prayer, but I frequently start mine with “Heavenly Father.” For some, “Praise God” or “Dear God” might feel more comfortable. Don’t let anyone tell you that your prayers aren’t proper because they don’t align with theirs. Your prayer is the perfect way to communicate with God because it’s your own. You can include God’s word in prayer and reflect on God’s promises in prayer.
A Simple Prayer for Recovery
Thank you for waking me up sober and healthy today. I’m blessed. Keep my heart centered on you and my soul grounded in sobriety. Thank you for delivering me from active addiction. I give all the glory to you.
In Jesus Name
The benefits of communicating in your prayer through writing are remarkable. Fall in love with who you are when trusting the Lord on your recovery path. Spending time in daily prayer has proven to be fruitful in my life, and I pray that you will know these blessings. When you put God at the center, everything else falls into place. Keeping a healthy prayer habit is your best defense against temptations and straying from your sobriety. Do you have a journal idea that needs prayer? Let me know in the comments, and I’ll get right on it!
Elizabeth Ervin is the owner of Sober Healing. She is a freelance writer passionate about opioid recovery and has celebrated breaking free since 09-27-2013. She advocates for mental health awareness and encourages others to embrace healing, recovery, and spirituality.