I received the Illustrated Faith Starter Kit for free from DaySpring in exchange for my honest opinion and review.
Over the past year, I have started Bible Journaling. It was a slow process at first because I felt inadequate, and compared my own journey to others. While I am crafty and creative, my creativity lies with writing, not hand lettering or drawing. I quickly learned that you don’t have to know how to hand letter, or even know how to draw to be able to Bible Journal. If you are just getting started with journaling, read below for 9 things you need to know when you start Bible Journaling:
9 Things You Need to Know When You Start Bible Journaling:
1. Accept that Creativity is a Gift.
This may sound silly, but sometimes it’s hard to accept that God has gifted us with creativity. That creativity can look different for everyone. For some people, being creative means being able to draw really well. For others, it means being able to write really well. For others, it means being able to ice and design professional looking cakes. The bottom line is, creativity can look a little different for everyone. Accept that you are creative and that it is a gift from God.
2. Stomp Out the Negative Voices.
The first time I saw anything about Bible Journaling was on Instagram. I saw this beautiful hand lettering and painting on a passage in Psalms. I was immediately drawn to it. Then I thought, “That is so beautiful and I would love to do that, but my handwriting is horrible, and I can’t draw a stick figure! As badly as I want to do this, I could never do it.”
Soon after that, I realized that the voice telling me I couldn’t Bible Journal wasn’t from God. It was an attack from the enemy trying to keep me from digging deeper into God’s word. If you have that voice echoing negative thoughts in your mind, take them captive. Don’t let the fear of your Bible Journal not looking as good as someone else’s, the inability to draw a stick man, or anything else keep you from starting to journal in your Bible.
3. Don’t Compare.
One of my best friends has a tattoo on her arm that reads, “Comparison is the thief of joy.” When she is asked about her tattoo, she will tell you that she had an issue comparing her work, achievements, and opportunities that she got in her line of work to others. She was always feeling like she wasn’t measuring up because she didn’t get a particular client or opportunity. She quickly realized that all that time spent comparing herself to others was stealing her joy. It made her lose the passion she once had for her work.
When you compare yourself to others, it can make you feel inadequate. When you first start journaling in your Bible, don’t look at pictures of other Bible Journaling on Instagram and immediately think negative thoughts about your own journaling. Your Bible is yours, and the way you journal in is between you and God. It’s not to be compared to anyone else’s because this is your journey and your journal. (I love this image of comparison is the thief of joy journaled here.)
4. Give Yourself Time to be Creative.
Creativity can take time. It doesn’t always happen the minute you sit down to read your Bible, and that’s OK. Figure out what works for you, and do that. It can be a different process for everyone.
What works for me is whenever God speaks to me, or something important happens in my life, I journal it. I can go weeks without writing a single thing, and then I can end up journaling every day for a week. It all depends on what is going on in my life and how God is working in my life and speaking to me.
5. Use a Pencil First.
When you draw or write for the first time, use a pencil. If you make a mistake, you can erase it. When you have the drawing and/or lettering like you want it, you can go over it with a pen (one that doesn’t bleed through). Once the pen dries, you can erase the pencil marks.
6. Use What You Have.
If you’re frugal (like me), you don’t have to invest a lot of money to get started journaling. If you have kids, raid their stash of color crayons, colored pencils, stamps, and even stickers. If you have a craft closet, pull out gel pens, scrapbook paper, paint, and washi tape. Use what you currently have to journal at home. (Then watch for the Illustrated Faith Kits to go on sale, and grab one. You will LOVE it!)
7. Draw Inspiration from Worship Songs.
If you have a favorite worship song that speaks to you now or has spoken to you during a season in your life, use that to inspire you. All worship songs are inspired by scripture, so when you find one that speaks to you, look it up to see which verse it comes from. (You can do this easily by Googling a line in the song that you know is in the Bible plus “verse”.)
A couple of months ago, I was dealing with a situation with my blog/business that was detrimental. I found myself praying and crying out to God wondering how I could get over this obstacle while driving down the road listening to my church’s praise team’s newest worship album.* The song It Is Well (the Bethel version) was playing from the album: “Far be it from me to not believe, Even when my eyes can’t see, And this mountain that’s in front of me Will be thrown into the midst of the sea.”
Tears immediately flowed from my eyes as God reminded me that nothing is too big for Him to overcome. When I got home, I Googled “this mountain that’s in front of me will be thrown into the sea verse” and it brought up Matthew 21:21. I looked it up in my Bible and felt compelled to draw mountains and the words that stuck out to me as a reminder that nothing is too big for God to handle. I also dated it so that I could remember when this happened as I read this passage again at a later date.
8. Document Answered Prayers.
In the past week, my oldest daughter asked Jesus into her heart. It was such a sweet blessing, and an answered prayer! I had been praying for her to come to know Jesus as her Savior since I was pregnant with her (8 years ago). When she asked Jesus into her heart, I shared the verse my dad shared with my after I asked Jesus into my heart as a child, Luke 15:10.
The next day, I documented the answered prayer. Sometimes when we are in the valleys of life, we forget the hilltops. When you have documented answered prayers throughout your Bible, it can make it a little easier to get through those valleys knowing that the God who answered your prayers is still in control of the situation.
9. Use an Illustrated Faith Kit.
The first time I finally drew in my Bible was because of an Illustrated Faith Kit from DaySpring.com. Illustrated Faith Kits are AMAZING! Most of the kits come with a 14-day devotional, cut-outs, washi tape, and stamps (for those of us who cannot hand letter!). Not only are the devotionals short and sweet for busy moms, the entire kit is themed to go with the devotional!
If you’re new to Bible Journaling, I would suggest the Starter Kit from Illustrated Faith. It has everything you need to get started!
- 1 devotional booklet, 14 devotionals
- 5 7″ x 8″ sheets of cardstock stickers (422 pieces)
- 1 .35 precision pen
- 2 washi tape dispensers, 10′ each
- 3 acrylic paint tubes
- 3 paint-it application cards
- 20 paper pieces
- 3 postcards
- 1 7″ x 8″ Bible journaling mat
- 5 idea starter sheets
- Journaling with stickers
- Using tabs
- Using washi tape
- Using paper pieces
- 1 storage box
This starter kit shows you how to paint in your Bible, includes the journal mat (it’s awesome), and the devotional walks you through how to journal. There are also other themed Illustrated Faith Devotional Kits that are great! No matter which one you choose, you will be glad you purchased it!
I received the Illustrated Faith Starter Kit for free from DaySpring in exchange for my honest opinion and review on how to use it when Bible Journaling. You can purchase your kit here. Be sure to follow DaySpring on Twitter, like them on Facebook, follow them on Pinterest, and follow them on Instagram for daily inspiration.
If you enjoyed this post on Bible Journaling, be sure to sign up for my FREE 7-day devotional for busy moms below!
*If you purchase the worship album from my church’s praise team, the proceeds go to missions.