dscn3488We experience it everyday… something sets us off, we know our heart is not right in the situation, but how do we begin to work through the problem and “preach the gospel” to ourselves?  For years I struggled with this concept. I knew there was a problem but did not feel equipped to deal with it in a fruitful way.

Today, I want to share a simple outline created by Covenant PCA’s Pastor John Neal. I have found this immensely helpful in working through heart issues in a clear and concise way.  I have used it in conflict with others as well as just dealing with my own wrong attitudes.  I call it “Heart Journaling” because journaling is very important to the process.

I will briefly walk through the process in an easy to remember system. We also have a handy PDF document that goes into great detail about what I share briefly below. Download that document, here.  We can call this “The ABC’s of Heart Journaling”.

  • We begin with the “Activating event”. What is the issue that has you upset? Simply state it in a sentence or two.
  • Next, think through your “Beliefs”. What are the thoughts and feelings that are stirring you up; causing you to respond wrongly?
  • Circumstances”. Narrow things down to the sin: the idol: the root issue.
  • Next, “Dispute” sinful, idolatrous, distorted thinking with truth!
  • Finally, “Enact!” Pray for the grace and power of the Lord who is the Spirit of freedom.

I hope you find this as helpful and encouraging as I have!  God’s plan includes using the conflicts and trials of life to sanctify us. Heart journaling will help you seize those opportunities for this purpose. Enjoy “The ABC’s of Heart Journaling“!

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