As we move about to equip coaches
for teaching others in community,
it is helpful to have some framework
to help them - help others.
Bible Journaling is simple.
Helping others to see the depth and breath
of the possible responses is NOT EASY.
For a couple of reasons:
1. Our churches have members that are trained
and experienced in broadcast information sharing. We are taught,
(or preached to, or informed) without much expectation of dialogue or response.
2. If response IS DESIRED and WELCOMED- there is very little process or planned system of help along the journey. (In other words if you figure something out that is great- but it is your own personal "thing".)
3. Our overworked church workers may themselves see
Visual Faith as just "one more thing" they have to implement or find time to initiate.
So--- in an era when communication has moved to interactive, and perhaps a social media response IS DESIRED, what do we do? We equip the laypeople to be coaches to teach others. We go where the Holy Spirit is already at work, and we look for people of peace. (There is no need to convince someone of the worth of the practice, as that takes too much time and energy.) Find the receptive hearts and souls and GO THERE.
We have found these FRAMEWORKS for teaching Visual Faith helpful:
1. Jann Gray of Illuminated Faith uses this:
SEE and REMEMBER. That is how she helps people look for what God is saying in Scripture, mark the spot of the teaching and how might it best be remembered? Illuminated-Journaling-Book-Jann-Gray
Jan lists 3 categories of margin response for Bible Journaling:
Typography, (words) Image (drawn or traced )and Collage (Mixed media)
2. READ, REFLECT and RESPOND--This is the movement in spiritual formation from head knowledge and mastering the text, to heart transformation and praying for the text to master OUR HEART.
3. Bible Journaling (in Bibles, journals and other faith resources) and Visual Prayer are both found in the Visual Faith framework. Prayer is both the foundation and the umbrella for Bible Journaling teaching. The Holy Spirit leads the way in all of this spiritual formation process. Every response for marginalia can begin with prayer and becomes the final blessing.
4. The margin response can be seen as a "mini-billboard" created as a personal reminder. What will help me to instill this Scripture right to my very soul? (and my memory then can recall it)
5. Bible Journaling sets the mark on the journey, becomes the legacy, provides the blueprint for "telling the story" to others, that we may be His witnesses.
6. It is a grace process. It always welcomes and says- "glad you are here" and never chastises and says-"where have you been?"
7. The simple act of coloring or tracing or writing helps to create “sacred space” for each of us. It can be the child-like quality that Jesus talks about in how to approach life in the Kingdom. Jesus said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 18:23
8. If we think of God's Word as His love letter to us, His TEXT-MESSAGE to us, we know that a message deserves a response. So the margins become simply "our response to a text message."
9. All of the time, energy, and processing becomes a part of each person's IEP- Individual Education Plan. This is designed by the Holy Spirit for each and every person, and no two journeys will be alike. Our own personal experiences become the groundwork used to empower us with inner strength- in our inner being.
Ephesians 3: 14-20.