February 4, 2024 - Episode #4925

Spoken Word

February 4, 2024

By: Lloyd D. Newell

Remembering the Day

For as long as people have put pen to paper, they have found satisfaction in keeping journals. So many people of all ages record special moments in their lives, expressing their inmost feelings and thoughts. Some do it to leave a record for their posterity; others write only for themselves. There’s just something about putting our life into words that helps us see it clearly, understand it, and over time, make it better.

Very often, the most difficult step in journaling is simply getting started. Experienced journal keepers have found that it helps to establish a rhythm for writing. It can be different for everyone; some journal every Sunday afternoon, before breakfast on weekdays, on the train during the daily commute, or just before bed. Journaling, they discover, invites order, awareness, and peace into their lives.

During the pandemic, a woman started keeping a journal—just a quick entry each morning to reflect on her many blessings. Sometimes she repeated what she wrote the day before. Some days she wrote with more enthusiasm than others. But now, years later, she looks forward to her daily ritual, and she enjoys reading past entries. Recording her gratitude in a journal has deepened her joy and softened her sorrow.

Scientific research confirms what journal keepers have learned for themselves: journaling has all kinds of mental, emotional, and spiritual benefits. Besides the obvious ones, “like a boost in mindfulness, memory and communication skills, … studies have also found that writing in a journal can lead to better sleep, a stronger immune system, more self-confidence and a higher I.Q.”[1] Some find healing and peace in the pages of their journals. Others find deeper understanding of their own emotions, which helps them connect better with others. By remembering and reflecting, by writing things down, we can see how we’ve grown over the years. And seeing how we faced challenges in the past might give us courage to face what lies ahead.

Even if we write only one line every few days, journaling can help us “ponder the path of [our] feet”[2] while also turning our thoughts heavenward, opening our hearts to gratitude for the Lord, His grace, and His goodness in our lives.


Conductor: Ryan Murphy

Organist: Brian Mathias

“My God Is So High”

African American spiritual

Arrangement: Ryan Murphy

“There Is Sunshine in My Soul Today”

Music: John R. Sweney

Lyrics: Eliza E. Hewitt

Arrangement: Mack Wilberg

“Finale Jubilante” (Organ Solo)

Music: Healey Willan

Arrangement: Janet Linker

“For I Am Called by Thy Name”

Music: Crawford Gates

Lyrics: from Jeremiah 15:16

“Pilgrim Song”

American folk hymn

Arrangement: Ryan Murphy

“Music Everywhere”

Music: Ryan Murphy

Lyrics: adapted from S. W. Foster

“O Love That Will Not Let Me Go”

Music: Albert L. Peace

Lyrics: George Matheson

Arrangement: Ryan Murphy

[1] Hayley Phelan, “What’s All This about Journaling?,” New York Times , Oct. 25, 2018, nytimes.com.

[2] Proverbs 4:26.