Micro-Journaling Simplified

bible journaling Feb 14, 2020
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Have you ever looked at the beautiful pieces of fancy artwork pictured in other women’s Bible pages on Pinterest boards and concluded that Bible journaling isn’t for you because you don’t have a journaling Bible and can’t even draw a stick figure?  I’ve got good news! You don’t have to. Long before I co-authored “The Complete Guide to Bible Journaling”, I started out micro-journaling in my regular Bible without wide margins.  

 What is micro-journaling anyway?

Micro journaling is simply taking short notes and/or making small doodles in the available space in your Bible so that you can keep track of verses that are special to you. This is usually done in the Bible you use on a regular basis as opposed to an extra Bible specifically designed to do art in.

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It is similar to traditional Bible journaling in that you are keeping a record of what God says to you and drawing attention to verses that are especially important or meaningful to you personally.  It can also be colorful and artistic in nature if you want it to be. The difference is that the words and art are minimalistic and tiny in nature. 

Benefits of micro-journaling

The number one benefit of micro-journaling is that it allows you to let go of perfectionism.  I love that I can create a small doodle and a few words in my morning devotions and take less than 5 minutes to do it.  It doesn’t have to be perfect, it just needs to catch the attention of your future self to remind you of the truth you want to remember.  

It’s also much less intimidating.  If you’ve ever been intimidated by the aforementioned Pinterest boards with large scale Bible journaling displays, you will be refreshed by the simplicity of micro-journaling.  

Best of all you don’t need any artistic skills. (woot! woot!) You can add a couple of tiny stickers or shade in a little color with some colored pencils and build from there.

If you’re ready to start developing your drawing skills a little bit at a time, I’ve created a doodle cheat sheet you can download for free HERE. It consists of 4 printable bookmarks that each have a category of really easy doodles on them. You can look at them for reference and then draw them as big or as small as you like.  They have helped spark my imagination so many times. I printed several sets and have them handy wherever I go.

When you start to add little tidbits of information and memories in the margins of your Bible you will find that it becomes increasingly precious to you because you make it your own and it becomes a place of comfort and encouragement during difficult times. 

*The key is going back and reviewing those things you want to remember.

 

 

How to Get Started Micro-journaling

If you’re ready to jump in, here are a few ideas to get you started.  

You can jot down:

  • Meanings of words
  • Topical lists
  • Cross references
  • Inspirational quotes
  • Greek/Hebrew word studies

And it’s always fun to embellish the words with images and a splash of color.  Try:

  • Stickers
  • Mini stamps
  • Colored pencils
  • Highlighters
  • Doodled images

 

Necessary Supplies:

  • Micron or other ultra-fine pen.  

Because an ultra-fine pen can write very tiny, you can fit significantly more text in narrow margins and small spaces. When shopping for a pen, you want to pay close attention to the point size.  A regular ball point pen is typically 1.0 point. A fine tip is less than 0.8 mm and an ultra fine pen is .4 or less.

My favorite brand is Micron because they manufacture a pen that is .005. That’s like writing with a single horse hair. 

  • Colored Pencils 

My favorite are Crayola Twistables.  They last a long time, their colors are very vibrant, they have a wide variety of colors and you don’t need to deal with the mess of sharpening them. When I was doing research for “the Complete Guide to Bible Journaling” book, I tested several different brands from different price points on Bible paper to determine how they worked on thin paper.  In my opinion, Crayola Twistables went on smoother and blended as good or better than the more expensive brands.  

  • Micro-stamps 

You can find these at a crafting store or even at a dollar store if you keep your eyes open for them. Look for tiny stamps that are versatile or abstract so you can get the most use out of them.  Leaves, flowers, butterflies, feathers....etc all work great.

  • Tiny stickers 

Again, I recommend you keep a lookout  for small stickers at cheap dollar stores. You might even check the kids toy isle in the dress up section.  They sometimes have little sticker sets intended for little girls fingernails, and those little flowers work great in small spaces in your Bible.

  • Washi Tape

Have you discovered Washi tape yet?  If not, I hope you get a chance to try some soon.  It’s so fun! Washi tape is a thin tape made of rice paper that is about as sticky as painters tape so it doesn’t damage your Bible page if you decide to remove it.  It comes in hundreds of patterns and colors. Add a small strip of washi tape as a border to your page or as a backdrop to a word or two you want to remember. It adds a quick pop of color without the mess of paints or markers.  Be careful though. Once you get started with washi tape, it’s hard to quit. If you get addicted to buying more and more colors, don’t say I didn’t warn you. 😁

 I hope you are ready to give micro-journaling a try. Can you imagine going back to the Word the next time you are feeling discouraged and then finding the comfort and encouragement your heart needs because you’ve written words of truth in the margins that are meaningful to you? 

It has the potential to significantly impact your relationship with Jesus and subsequently enhance your life in big ways.

 I remember the days as a busy young mom when I felt so much regret that I wasn’t spending time in the Word like I knew I should.  I just couldn’t make myself want to do it, so I cried out to Jesus and begged Him to make His Word come alive to me and to give me the desire to spend time with Him.  

He did. 

That’s when I discovered Bible journaling and a lightbulb went off in my head.  Now, as I keep a tangible record of the things God is teaching me and then go back and review it during times of discouragement, I’m growing deeper and deeper in relationship with Him and my desire to be in the Word has skyrocketed.

Sister, your Bible is the living and active Word of God.  When you interact with it and personalize it by taking a few minutes to keep a record of your time there, it soon becomes a physical record of your testimony of what God has done in your life. 

It will be a treasure you’ll cherish.

On a side note, if you’re contemplating the purchase of a journaling Bible with wide margins so you’ll have more room, check out the free Bible journaling selection tool I created.  There are so many to choose from and this tool will help you narrow it down and choose the Bible that’s right for you.

I hope this gets your creative juices flowing.  Micro-journaling is something you can do without artistic skill or expensive supplies

You’ll be so glad you did. Happy journaling!

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