Book Review Series: Elizabeth Dorathy’s Book of Mormon Journals

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My Witness of Jesus Christ: Book of Mormon Journal for YouthScripture Power! Book of Mormon Journal for ChildrenGuest post by Quimby. You can read some of Quimby’s previous posts here, and here

 

This is a combined review of both of Elizabeth Dorathy’s books: Scripture Power! Book of Mormon Journal for Children (US$8.99 / CFI Books) and My Witness of Jesus Christ: Book of Mormon Journal for Youth (US$16.99 / CFI Books)

 

 

Some years ago, I decided to journal my experiences reading the Book of Mormon. BOM1Over a period of about a year, I read the Book of Mormon, taking notes about what I was reading – verses that meant something to me; questions I had; answers to questions. It was a valuable experience, and I felt I grew a lot during the process – but oh, if only I’d had these journals instead!

My notes were a tangled mess; and I never did find them useful to refer back to. There was just no structure. They were also written haphazardly in a couple of composition books. And because my handwriting is bad at the best of times, they were jumbled up, indecipherable mess.

You could follow my example, and create your own Book of Mormon Journal. I highly doubt you’d have the same problems deciphering your handwriting that I had. Or, you could use Elizabeth Dorathy’s journals to help prompt you and to guide your study the next time you read the Book of Mormon.

Dorathy’s journals are simple in format: She follows the Book of Mormon in chapter order, asking a few questions along the way. Some chapters get multiple questions; some get none. There are two different products, one aimed at children and the other at youth. I have a child who is 6 and another who is 9, and I read these with them in mind. What would they think of them? Would they find them worthwhile?

I think so. My children are still young; but these questions would help them make sense of a complicated and complex text. I was 9 the first time I read the Book of Mormon. I remember the feeling of confusion – not really understanding what I was reading, especially the bits in Nephi that were from Isiah. I also remember the feeling of peace, the powerful testimony that it really was true. More than anything, my adult testimony rests on that long-ago reading of the Book of Mormon – that sweet certainty, without the doubt, without the distance. The 9 year old me would’ve loved this. The 9 year old me would’ve loved Scripture Power for the prompts, the direction it would have given my reading. The 16 year old me, Seminary vice president, Mormon extraordinaire, would’ve loved My Witness of Jesus Christ, too.

The – uh, let’s say – 21 year old me loves them both. The me that is full of doubts, full of questions, constantly struggling not to feel a growing distance with God. While some of Dorathy’s questions are familiar from my Seminary days, others were fresh, and challenged me to more fully apply the Book of Mormon to my own life.

BOM2Here is a hard truth that is difficult to share: It’s been several years since I’ve read the Book of Mormon. As I read through the journaling prompts, I was reminded of the beauty of the stories – as familiar to me as pictures in a photo album. I’ve had a pretty rough couple of months. Reading through these journals made me think, Maybe it’s time to pick up the Book of Mormon again. Maybe I’ll find some answers there. Maybe I’ll find some peace.

That journal I wrote all those years ago is long gone now, victim to mice and flooding. But I’m glad I’ve found Doharty’s product to take its place.

There are so many ways to use this product. They’d be a great help for your Seminary kid. They’d also be a wonderful Baptism gift, or a present for a child who is interested in reading the Book of Mormon for the first time. They’d be great to use for family scripture study, or to use the questions as a jumping-off point for Family Home Evening lessons. I think they’re even of value to adults. Yes, as an adult, you will find some of the questions rather basic (but then, they aren’t made with you in mind!) – but there are others that seem only more relevant, the older you get.

Me? I plan to use My Witness of Jesus Christ to guide my reading of the Book of Mormon. I want to take my time, and really find God again. I plan to use Scripture Power to help introduce my children to the Book of Mormon. We have Family Home Evening every week, and I think reading the verse in question, and then reading the journaling prompt, will help encourage understanding and discussion. I want us to record our answers (I might make my 9 year old do the writing – she has such beautiful handwriting!) and create a family journal of the Book of Mormon.

If you’re looking for a way to reconnect with the Book of Mormon, or if you’re looking for a way for your child to connect with it for the first time, I don’t think you can do any better than to use Elizabeth Dorathy’s Book of Mormon journals.

 

https://www.facebook.com/Book-of-Mormon-Journals-1489027774671859/

bookofmormonjournals.com


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15 Responses

  1. PegPog says:

    I would’ve walked past this as I am not very good at keeping my own journal. But now I’m interested– it isn’t what I thought it might be, and think I am going to get a copy for us to do as a family. Thank you.

  2. Oh, Quimby! Your review made me cry. This is exactly why I wrote these journals. I hoped they would inspire a whole generation to come to love the Book of Mormon and apply its messages to their lives. Yes, they are geared to each age group, but the themes in them are universal: compassion, focusing on others, relying on Christ during tough times, finding peace etc. I worked extra hard to avoid messages of guilt that our children tend to be bombarded with (I avoided “bad/good” when describing people or choices) and focused on messages of hope, which I believe is the central message of the Book of Mormon. I am so thrilled that they resonated with you. Thank you, thank you for the beautiful review.

    • Quimby says:

      I really appreciate that you avoided messages of guilt and focused on hope! That came through so strongly in the journals – they were so positive. You created a wonderful product. Thank you!

  3. Spunky says:

    This is such a great review, Quimby! Thank you! I am wondering if I should get the youth one for myself– I certainly am in need a a spiritual tune-up, and having this sounds like it would help.

    Thank you!!

  4. Pam I says:

    Liz is a sweet friend and I am very excited to get a copy of Scripture Power for my 10 year old granddaughter and My Witness of Jesus Christ for me. This was a great review and I thank you for taking the time to read the books and review them.

  5. Emily says:

    I’m always looking for ways to help my 13, 10, and 7 year olds make personal connections with the scriptures and these definitely sound like a worthwhile avenue to check out. Thank you!

  6. Molly says:

    Thank you for this review! My oldest child is approaching baptism, and I have really wanted to read the Book of Mormon with him in a way that was a little more engaging than just round robin reading. This is now on my Christmas list for him. Thank you!

  7. Jennifer says:

    Thank you for being honest. I’m with you in many, many ways. I will look into these.

  8. Liz says:

    This is another that I would’ve not thought to get, but now I’m very interested, especially in the “Scripture Power” ones for my 9 & 7 year-olds. Thank you, Quimby!

  9. Sarah says:

    I’m marking this down for when my kids are older, and when my nieces start going through baptism prep! Thanks for the review.

  10. Heidi says:

    This is exactly what I have been looking for to give my children for Christmas! I hope there will be more to come for the other books of scripture!

  11. It sounds like my children are the perfect age for the scripture power volume. Thanks for the review, Quimby.

  12. OregonMum says:

    Something with journaling prompts is just what I need to get back into better scripture study.

  13. Kay Cookie says:

    Oh, I would have overlooked these too, but they sound great for me and my children. I always can use help motivating and staying on track with scripture study and something beautiful and thoughtful always works.

  1. January 21, 2016

    […] “Some years ago, I decided to journal my experiences reading the Book of Mormon. Over a period of about a year, I read the Book of Mormon, taking notes about what I was reading – verses that meant something to me; questions I had; answers to questions. It was a valuable experience, and I felt I grew a lot during the process – but oh, if only I’d had these journals instead!” Read More  […]

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