Messy Faith,  Personal and Spiritual Ramblings

{More} creative faith and Bible journaling resources

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It’s been over two years since I first talked about Bible journaling here on the blog. I haven’t spent nearly as much time on this as I would like, but I wanted to give a small update, share some things I’ve colored and created, and share some great resources I have found.

Bible journaling is a popular craze among women like me (white, middle class Christian women). For me, though, it’s more than the new latest thing. I have found that approaching faith and spiritual disciplines (like spending time in the Bible or attending church) with creativity rather than duty has been helpful for me.

I started out by purchasing several different scripture coloring books. In the last two years, this sub-industry of Bible journaling has totally skyrocketed and there are far more Bible coloring books than I could mention. Below are the ones I actually own:

Christmas 2016 I used Scripture coloring pages as Christmas gifts. This is one I did for my dad, with his favorite verse. The coloring page was from “Whatever is Lovely” and I bought the frame at Hobby Lobby.

I also have these faith-based creative journals:

*I was graciously gifted these by WaterBrook Multnomah Press to review!

One of my free drawings from 30 Days to Peace – lyrics from “I Am” by Crowder

It is still pretty rare for me to take the time to color during the day, at home. I have taken coloring pages along with me to a discipleship coffee date. I also have pretty much given up on learning lettering, dabbling with watercolor, or anything much more serious than coloring and drawing. I am just busy with life and have not found a way to consistently carve out creative space for myself.

However, I have come to both love and need the time I spend on Sundays while listening to our pastor preach to bring coloring pages along with me or color in the margins of My Creative KJV, which my mom bought me for my birthday.

Related: Christian, you can read your Bible and still be falling apart – read here

I have found that coloring is very grounding for me. It keeps my so-often-weary mind from wandering and keeps me awake. If I have to sit there and just pay attention and listen, I end up thinking about all of the things I need to do OR falling asleep. If I am engaging my senses by coloring, I actually pay better attention than when I am sitting there staring at our pastor.

Related: How to deal with spiritual abuse triggers at church

That said, I didn’t really like lugging my coloring books to church, because I have so many of them and they are so big. Instead, I have found some MICRO supplies that make it easy to tote things back and forth to church and also not taking up a lot of space on my lap.

I LOVE these two spiral notebook / journals because they offer lined pages (which I use for jotting down notes or quotes) as well as coloring pages. I can have one of these open on my lap, working on a coloring page – while still having that space to write down something as soon as I hear it. These are my go-to and personal favorite:

I colored this one during the Christmas season

Normally, my routine is to start out by flipping through the pages in my Bible where the sermon is from or my journals and pick something to color that either “speaks to me” that instant or goes along with the message.

Our pastor has been preaching through the book of Ecclesiastes, so here are some of the things I have done recently over the past few weeks:

I have been experimenting more with shading using colored pencils and was very thrilled with how this turned out! ~From My Creative KJV
From Brownlow Gifts Scripture Coloring Journal, This is The Day The Lord Has Made

We are currently in a Sunday School class studying the Psalms, so these are what I’ve been doing in Sunday School:

I ran into CVS the other day for allergy medicine and was greeted by a table of Bible coloring books and journals. I LOVED that there were mini versions of some of the books that I don’t currently own, as well as some card sets. I picked these up on the cheap (one of them was only $1 because the packaging was damaged) as a Mother’s Day present!

Not exactly Scripture coloring but I enjoyed coloring this during the services on Mother’s Day 2018, then using it as a photo prop after the service with my boys. This card was from Karla Dornacher’s set.

One final church-based resource that I really love is called My Church Lettering Journal. The author is very sensitive to the struggles of those who have grown up in church. I love what she has to say to introduce her journal:

My Christian story is not unlike many others out there. I’ve gone to church for my entire life and sat through many sermons, some good and some not so good. Regardless of who was preaching, I’ve always wanted to learn as much about God as possible while I was in church, but that wasn’t always happening.

At some point, without fail, my mind would wander. I would start thinking about what to make for dinner, my plans for the next week or just where the woman two rows ahead of me got that fabulous dress. My mind would be anywhere but on the message that God wanted me to hear to take me through the upcoming week. 

I was sick of the struggle, so I set out to find some way to change it…

Lettering in church reignited my desire to hear God’s word. It stopped my mind from wandering and brought me closer to God and living in His word because I was completely mentally present for it. Every Sunday, I look forward to the moment that I get to pull out my church Journal and learn more about the amazing message that God has in store for me.

While I have not delved into her lettering tutorials (which occupy the first few pages of the journal), I echo her sentiments completely. I have use the blank pages she provides to artistically represent ideas from messages or ideas I’m processing in regard to my faith.

Read the whole story behind this illustration here: Live in the outflow: a new way of looking at Christian living
There’s more to this image that I will share in an upcoming blog post, but the quote is song lyrics from “Speak O Lord” (Getty) – a song that we sing regularly at our church.

I’ve been using a canvas colored pencil holder like the one pictured. (I got mine on Amazon nearly 3 years ago). It fits easily into my handbag. It’s easy to slide pencils in and out (without making noise!)

Colored pencil holders from Ginko Supplies

I’ve been carrying my things in a bag I bought a few months ago, but the handles just broke. Dayspring has some great tote bags and pencil pouches for Bible journalers and creatives!

Tote bag from Dayspring

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I have found that approaching faith, the Bible, and spiritual disciplines with creativity rather than duty has been helpful for me. More Scripture coloring books, journals, and Bible journaling templates for faith-based creatives.

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