I loved Nicholas Sparks’ “The Notebook.” The movie was great, and the book was even better. But that’s not the notebook I’m writing about today.
In December 2012, a friend of mine gave me a journal. I decided it would be my “spiritual journal,” where I would take notes during church. It was a hot pink notebook with a Jane Austen quote on the cover: “Let other pens dwell on guilt and misery.”
The notebook even came with me to Uganda when I moved there in 2013. Unfortunately, my pen DID dwell on a lot of guilt and misery, especially during my year overseas. And when I returned to the United States in 2014, I decided that it was time to be done with the guilt and misery in that notebook, and I bought a new one.
This new notebook was the same style as the other one. It had a soft leather cover, an elastic loop that kept it closed, and a shiny ribbon to keep my place. The only difference with this one was that it was teal instead of pink.
My first page of notes in this notebook was on January 10, 2015. The church was Emmanuel Community Church. I always put the date and the location in the upper right-hand corner. The notebook is flooded with notes from sermons, devotions, conferences, and, rarely, journal entries about how I was feeling.
What I love about these notebooks is the fact that I go back to them when I’m in search of wisdom or guidance, or when I want to remember something from a specific sermon. If there was something I really liked, or something that convicted me, I would circle it or star it, knowing that I’d want to read it again later.
As we approach 2019, it’s time for another new notebook. This little teal notebook has treated me well over the past three years, but it’s time to move on. Before I do, though, I decided to flip back through it and share some of those circled verses and notes that I took. Maybe they will inspire you as much as they did me.
“Jesus was showing once again that He values RELATIONSHIP over RULES, and that the new way of furthering God’s kingdom is through COMPASSION.”
“Jesus + Nothing = Everything”
“Our Heavenly Father is kind, and He is merciful, so we should strive to be the same way.”
“Understand that you don’t deserve God’s grace, but treat everyone else as if they do.”
“For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.” John 3:17
“God is not my boss, He is my Father.”
“Christians need to understand that God is still in control.”
“Faith is not a ‘magic feeling’ that makes us do great things. Faith is believing that God will do what He said He will do.”
“Stop trying to be like other Christians and be like Jesus!”
“We need to spend much more time seeking the FACE of God, and less time seeking the hand of God.”
“True freedom is living according to God’s design.”
“Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex. Your workmanship is marvelous.” Psalm 139:14
“Mercy is undeserved forgiveness and unearned kindness.”
“Jesus is more willing to give you mercy than you are to receive it.”
“Stop trying to prove who you are to people and God.”
“Stop assessing God’s goodness by how your life feels at any given time.”
“People who do not believe are living all around you. Live such good lives that they will see the good things you do and will give glory to God.” 1 Peter 2:12
“His love isn’t based upon who YOU are, it’s based upon who HE is.”
Happy New Year, everyone! May God bless us all with another year of joys and wisdom to better serve Him.