top of page

I am shredding my old journals!

May 15, 2023

I went through 30+ years of journals over the weekend. My journaling is not deep and meaningful and for sure not publishable, but just my thoughts, my prayers, my impressions, my frustrations and joys. Going through it brought back amazing memories of events that shaped my world, our early marriage, us living in China, the various jobs we held, the death of family members and dear friends, trips we have taken, the beauty of creation, meeting amazing people along the way, the counseling I needed to address issues of my past. The amazing gift of Jim in my life for the last 36 years. These things have shaped me, made me who I am today. The people I encountered inspired me (some to be like them, others to not be like them), the conversations that focused me, the beauty of nature that brought me life back to what matters.

But I think more than any of that I have seen God’s hand in all. As a follower of Jesus I have always tried to live out His principles. This morning I was reading about his reprimand of the religious leaders of His time….. Not very kind words! The chapter is titled: “Superficial spirituality verses genuine humility.” Wow… harsh words about putting the emphasis on the wrong things, condemning people for the same things they have been doing themselves. He calls them frauds and pretenders! They were obsessed with the peripheral issues, but miss the major focus to “walk with in the love of God, to display mercy to others, and to live with integrity.”

As I read through my journals, there were many mishaps, many frustrations, many things I could have done better, times I could have shown more compassion, but there were also things that I did well, times when I listened to God, and lived out what He hopes for.

The journals will go into the shredder this week! Not because they are awful or could be used against me, but because my journey is not yet over and the things I learned from the past will hopefully shape my future, but not define it.

I am turning 64 in a few weeks and have maybe another 20 years (but only God knows). I want to continue to live for Him, want to focus on the things that matter, live a life that is worthy of His calling.

My past has shaped me but does not define me. I am looking forward to reading the next set of journals in 20 years and see what life has brought. I want to be intentional in the things I do, making every moment count.

I regularly want to ask myself: What drives me? What matters? How do I measure my life? What does my life amount to? Will I love God and people well?

bottom of page