I recently discovered some wonderful Bible studies I’d like to share with you. Have you noticed the craze in Bible journaling lately? I have seen some truly stunning pages where people have colored or even watercolored in their Bibles, making something akin to illuminated pages. I confess, I am completely intimidated by those pictures. I do not have that “artistic touch” and haven’t taken the time to learn.
Kari, who blogs at Stone Soup for Five, came up with her nifty Journal & Doodle Bible Studies after developing her DIY Bible journaling system. She says, on her blog, that she was tired of taking sermon notes on random pieces of paper and then misplacing them. I was relieved to hear I’m not the only person who does that! Heh. Her goal in writing the studies is to encourage and enable women to immerse themselves in God’s Word and think deeply about it.
I can’t remember where I first heard about the Journal & Doodle studies, but I was immediately intrigued. I went over to her website, and downloaded her free study on Ephesians (just subscribe to her newsletter), and purchased one on the book of John, as well.
I’ll be honest, I wasn’t really sure what to expect, other than my friend saying how wonderful they are. I’ve been working through Ephesians, and I have to say – this is a great way to study the Bible!
These studies are designed to work into daily life. There are no daily assignments; you work on them as you have time. There are three parts to each study, to help you remember and apply what you’re learning:
- Bible Overview: This is where you do all the work in your bible, like reading, underlining, marking, and titling each chapter. (Kari says if you really cannot bring yourself to mark in your Bible, you can make copies of your Bible pages and stick them in your journal. I already write in my Bible some, so it doesn’t bother me to write in mine.)
- Journal & Doodle: In this section, you work in your journal. Kari gives lots of suggestions, including doodles, to help you get started. I’m pretty much copying hers at this point. She even has links to videos of the doodles and map work on her blog, if you need to see exactly what to do. I appreciate that, because I’m a very visual learner and sometimes watching someone do something is the only way I understand it. (Regarding the map work: Kari will show you how to draw the map, but there is also one you can cut out and put in your journal and label as you go if you don’t feel you can draw it.)
- Reflection & Application: This part is, naturally, about applying what you’ve learned to your life. This part includes thinking, journaling, and do-ing. There are also “going deeper” activities you can do as time and interest allow.
Kari takes you step-by-step through everything you need to do, so there is no need for anxiety. (I tend towards anxiety.) She said I can use washi tape in my journal. I love washi tape! Also, you can start with any old notebook if you like. She recommends a nicer sketch book if you really like to draw, but I’m using a composition notebook. In fact, her list of recommended supplies is blessedly simple and short: your Bible, a dictionary, 3×5 cards, pencils/pens/highlighters, and your beverage of choice.
I am enjoying my Bible study time very much. Kari has done a great job creating studies that direct you in such a way that you are able to draw out the important pieces of Bible passages, without telling you what to think. There are no “correct” answers. In fact, she is careful to say that if you can’t answer something, you should look up words you’d like defined, perhaps, so you don’t fret over not knowing what to say. Not that I would ever do that. Nope, not me. Okay, you caught me. I’m really quite good at fretting. Kari seems to have lived inside the head of a neurotic Bible study journal wannabe, and knows how to answer any objections before you have time to think them.
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Beth is a homeschooling mom of two teenage girls and one young boy. A Michigan girl at heart, she’s lived in North Carolina with her husband for 17 of their 20 years of marriage, and now they’re getting ready to move their family to Colorado! With regard to homeschooling , she is passionate about living books and Charlotte Mason’s principles of education. With regard to life, she is passionate about relationships and learning what it means to love all of God’s people. When she’s not wrangling the boy, you can find her reading, knitting, or gardening. She is the author of Acorn Hill Academy and you can find her on Facebook, Twitter, G+, Pinterest and Instagram.