The Spiritual Circle Journal is a journal for adults that helps guide their devotional time, record prayers, and see where God is moving in their lives. The pages include nine circles to represent different ways to talk to God and to listen to God, providing direction and focus for daily quiet time.
The Spiritual Circle Journal for Kids & Teens is similar. Each page includes nine fun shapes (a car, light bulb, heart, shoe, etc.) that represent different areas of of focus. As the child has his devotional time, he writes notes in each shape to record prayers, insights from scripture reading, thank-you’s to God, favorite verses, concerns, and so on. There aren’t any rules, or any order to the process. The shapes are there to remind the child of the different topics he may want to think or pray about that day. As he prays, thinks about his day, or reads the Bible, he is free to skip around the page writing comments, notes, and prayers as they come to mind. Some of the journal entries will be introspective; others will hopefully inspire the child to action, creating a link between time with God and his relationships with others.
This is a unique way to introduce a child to having a quiet time or to offer a different approach for a devotional time. It’s not a Bible study, although it could be used as a supplement to one. It doesn’t teach or provide pre-written prayers. Instead, it unleashes the child or teen’s creativity, providing gentle guidance in developing a relationship with God and encouraging them to look for how God is working in their lives. The pages are a heavy weight, slightly glossy paper that would work well with colored pencils, markers, or even watercolors. An artsy child could have a lot of fun with this journal.
The journal instructions suggest that the child start by using the book once or twice a week at first. That way, there isn’t a feeling of failure if the child misses a day. Emily has been using her journal every morning, though. She begins with her usual Bible and devotional book reading, then follows up by recording her thoughts in the Spiritual Circle Journal. She says that she enjoys using it because it helps her get her thoughts and feelings out and that writing her thoughts helps to organize them instead of keeping them jumbled in her head. The Spiritual Circle Journal is helping her focus on God and her feelings about life.
I like this approach to journaling. While a blank page may seem intimidating to a child or teen, the smaller writing blocks are much less so. The suggested themes for each shape give direction on topics to journal about. Children and teens can choose to simply write their thoughts in the shapes, to color or paint the shapes to add color, or even to draw symbols or pictures that will illustrate their thoughts. If you are looking for an open-ended introduction to journaling for your child, this is a product you might enjoy.
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