It is not necessarily a novel thing to write down your prayer requests, but I have found it to be a novel idea to record the answers to prayers. So novel, in fact, that I had one skeptic to quip, “So, you are tracking God now to make sure He answers to you!” at one of my book signings for Organizing Your Prayer Closet.
I was not put-off, offended or unprepared for this remark, because it was the same question I had pondered before I ever began structured prayer journaling. In fact, it was almost a show-stopper! When my aunt gave me a little two-column journal with “Prayer Requests” and “Prayer Answers” headlining the pages, I wasn’t even sure if it was “legal” to God. Was it sacrileges? Who was I to track Him? Did He answer to me? Would this record make Him look bad? All of these questions and thoughts swirled in my mind. Thankfully, a wiser heart (surely led by God’s Spirit) prevailed, and I began journaling as such. Within the first week, I could not believe it – God was answering prayer! One of my friends who recently began using my structured prayer journal, was just as amazed as I was. She brought her copy of my book into church one Sunday and opened it, pointing to her list of answered prayers. Surprised, she said, “God answers prayer!!! Who knew???” Then we both laughed at just how incredible God is. God does answer prayer, but seldom do we recognize it. When we prayer journal; however, it is like bringing things from the spiritual realm into our visual presence where we can then physically see the hand of God moving in our prayers!!! I think God loves it when we track what He is doing. He is so faithful, and He also likes to show off!!! I wish I had thought to tell my critic that day that, “God doesn’t answer to me; HE ANSWERS ME!” “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” Jeremiah 33:3 Award-winning author Gina Duke introduces the gift of structured prayer journaling in her book, Organizing Your Prayer Closet: A New and Life-Changing Way to Pray (Abingdon Press), which was voted 2014’s BEST BOOK in the Prayer category by Christian Retailing. Gina is a wife, mom, and national speaker. She blogs at GinaDuke.com.