In 2015, a friend of mine shared something she had started called Scripture Journaling. She knew that in December 2014 our niece had died in childbirth and I was having a God-crisis. The journaling was a daily activity that involved journaling a passage of scripture that only took 10 minutes per day. The scriptures were from free downloads available at Sweet Blessings.

I never started. I was busy. I wasn’t sure it was worth the time, but it sounded interesting.

Over the next several months, I couldn’t let go of the fact that I had gotten away from reading my Bible. I was spiritually, emotionally, and physically sick. I had quit going to church, was deeply depressed, and had been suffering from mold in our HVAC system. I was going through a terrible time and couldn’t even stand hearing what I call “God Speak”. However, the idea of spending just 10 minutes kept nagging at me, and each month I downloaded the lesson thinking I could journal here and there, but it never happened.

Then, at the end of January of 2016, I decided I would start journaling the scriptures. We had replaced our HVAC system entirely in January, and my doctor started me on an antidepressant along with steroid inhalers and antibiotics. I still haven’t set foot inside a church, but I have gotten back into my Bible with the lessons starting in February this year.

What a great month to get started! The month of Valentines inspired Shannon, I suppose, and the lessons throughout February were all about love. God’s love, and our love for others, God’s love expressed through us toward others … it was just what I needed.

Every day in February I spent the 10 minutes reading and copying the scriptures. I still have a hard time hearing someone doing the God-speak thing, but I can tell you that God did an amazing thing in my life that month. I call it my God Download. He gave me a purpose for living!

During the first five days in February, I gained clarity on using my natural gift of encouragement through handwritten notes sent through the US mail. That’s right. Good old-fashioned letters in the mail. After 10 minutes of copying the scriptures out of my Bible, I spent another half hour thinking and praying and wrote down the names of people who were placed on my heart for one reason or another. I know so many wonderful people because of my attending Stampin’ Up! events, and I’ve gotten to know some of them pretty well … well enough that God told me what they needed encouragement with. I sent out cards by the handful, and by the end of the month, my box of hoarded cards was empty. I had mailed them all and needed to make more. The Kitchen Table Ministry was born. Click HERE to read more.


Everything about Celia’s Paper Garden and the “Handcrafting Keepsakes of Kindness” was born from those weeks spent quietly with God in February 2016, and I’ve been a Demonstrator since 2008. I spent time reading the scriptures assigned, copying them, and re-read the notes I had written in the margins of my Bible over a few years spent at Grace Church in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. (Back then it was a real teaching church, Bible-based, full of love and encouragement while Will McFarlane was on staff.) The memories that came flooding back to me are priceless treasures I don’t ever want to lose touch with again.

Funny thing, though … I progressed into the scripture assignments of March and April and May scriptures, but I never got anything out of them. Not like I had in February. Not like I had gotten through studying and acting on acts of love and encouragement. So, I’m journaling through that February again, and I will stay right here for as long as He has me stay here.

You see, this isn’t the first time that God has taken me through a passage in the Bible where He’s kept me for a year. I know that He has some kind of blessing He’s working out through me, or for me, or whatever … but I know it’s going to be fun!

If you’d like to start on a program of journaling too, you can go to Sweet Blessings and download whatever month you’d like.

Click HERE to read about a Kitchen Table Ministry.