The Power of Journaling

by Greg Wiens

I have received positive feedback from my Thursday Thoughts (TT) from the small number who receive it. Ironically, I am not writing for others as much as for myself. Writing things always organize my thoughts so I can think them through logically and then communicate them to others intelligently. As I journal, I have learned to articulate my thoughts and feelings in a semi-understandable manner. Often it starts out as run-on thoughts but then begins to separate into articulate deliberations.

In writing my TT, I am taking these thoughts another step forward and learning to communicate them TO OTHERS. This is another skill and a deeper level of vulnerability than just journaling.

Journaling has been a skill developed over the last 40 years in my life. It has taught me how to capture and identify my thoughts and feelings; then articulate them in writing. This was a challenge, but I got over the fear of others not liking or accepting my thoughts by convincing myself I was just writing for me and God, no one else. I told MK to burn them when I die for that reason. Once that fear was overcome, it was easier for me to think through my journal.

I have learned how to take what I have learned across the many individuals, books, and resources throughout my lifetime and then assimilate and integrate these learnings into my lifestyle. It became a virtuous cycle as I applied these learnings to my life. I would write about how I was growing by attempting to apply these learnings.  As a result, writing these learnings into this journal and attempting to live them across the years has kept me developing. This is the difference between wisdom and knowledge.  Wisdom is knowledge applied.

So when I would teach things, they were things that I had learned and attempted to apply, like Ezra 7.10

For Ezra had devoted himself to the study and observance of the Law of the LORD, and to teaching its decrees and laws in Israel.

Ezra 7.10

Now, writing TT for others takes this learning to another level because I share these learnings with others, which involves more exposure. Prior to TT, my writing was just with myself, MK & God.

In TT, I am writing learnings that are much fresher and still incubating. People can disagree with me easily, and I need to hear them and respond thoughtfully. It seemed to require less exposure to demonstrate a truth that I have learned and applied over time than to share it AS I am learning.

But this is more of the stage I am in. In these final stages of life, I need to develop the ability to hear and process something with what I have learned and found to be true over the 68 years of life. And it is imperative for me to share this with others who may not be in the same place in their journey. They may be more brilliant than I but simply haven’t lived the years with the repository of experiences or exposure I have had.

It is intriguing as I look back at my life thus far that I have experienced so much in life and visited literally around the world, being exposed to and learned from various cultures. Few people have been exposed to so many broken bones, accidents, stitches, cultures, people, mentors, fractured relationships, failed careers or callings, books, and weird events as I. 

Lord, thanks for the varied background you have provided me.  I am still alive, and may you not waste all those experiences or exposure for your kingdom. 

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