How to Life Journal (SOAP Method)

Watch this step by step video on how to do Life Journaling on your computer, or skip down to read about it instead.

First, hit up the Life Journal daily reading scripture here (thanks New Hope). You can also use You Version and set it to display the Life Journal reading plan (explained in the video).  A third option is to download the Maryland app and click the Bible tab for the daily reading.

NOTE: If you’re new to Life Journaling and find the daily reading plan a bit overwhelming, just stick with the New Testament reading for that day. If that’s still too much, just read a paragraph or two (or at least until you find a verse that really sticks out to you).

Read through today’s scripture, taking the time for your eyes and mind to catch one verse that stands out to you.

Once you have your daily verse picked out, you need to start writing.  This can be done on a journal or on computer.  If you are using a computer I highly recommend Evernote. It’s free and available for both Mac and Windows. Evernote indexes your entries in real time so it’s fast and easy to search and find information from your previous entries. Copy the verse or verses you want to journal around today and paste them into Evernote.

Now, taking the verse that stood out to you, use the SOAP method. Below is the official description for Life Journaling in a paper journal using the SOAP method but the directions easily translate to journaling on your computer. You may notice some of the instructions below duplicate some of what I’ve written above but it’s still good to get exposure to the process.

S for Scripture
Open your Bible to the reading found under today’s date. Take time reading and allow God to speak to you. Highlight, underline or place a mark in the margin of your Bible, next to the scriptures that stand out. When you are done, reread the verses you marked, look for one that particularly spoke to you that day, and write it in your journal.
Helpful hint: If you are having difficulty understanding what you’ve read, you may find a study Bible useful.

O for Observation                                                                                                                                       Paraphrase this scripture in your own words.  What do you think the scripture meant to the original hearers?

A for Application
Personalize what you have read, by asking yourself how it applies to your life right now. Perhaps it is instruction, encouragement, revelation of a new promise, or corrections for a particular area of your life. Write how this scripture can apply to you today.

P for Prayer
This can be as simple as asking God to help you use this scripture, or it may be a greater insight on what He may be revealing to you. Remember, prayer is a two way conversation, so be sure to listen to what God has to say! Now, write it out.

As you become more familiar with the process, don’t be afraid to move away from the SOAP method if you find alternatives work for you. This is simply a method to use if you don’t already have one.

That’s it! That’s all there is to it, so get started and let the Word of God begin to transform your life into what he has created it to be.

Again, for even quicker access to the daily Bile reading, download the mobile app and click the “Bible” feature.  You will be able to read or listen to the Bible passage for the day.


Share with

This post has 2 comments

  1. What a great way to familiarize newcomers to journaling! Great idea, Pastor Scot!

  2. I love using the S.O.A.P. method for journaling. We are slowly transitioning each of our student worship leaders into discipleship groups that use the Life Journal as the discipleship tool. It has challenged them to explore the Word, find meaning and application in passages and develop a consistent devotional life.
    Thanks so much for sharing this post!

Leave a Reply

Start typing and press Enter to search