JennieGScott.com - Page 18 of 18 - Enjoying the Journey
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25.07.2013

Pastor José’s eyes were rimmed with red as we gathered at the front of his church. We had just finished painting his house, transforming a drab concrete building into a vibrant standout in his barrio. “My family – we gather every morning to pray, and we have prayed for a year to have our house painted,” he explained softly as the translator relayed his words. I dropped my eyes to the dirt floor of the “Jesus is the Way to Heaven” Church. I have just repainted my entire house, and prayer was not part of the process. The money was in the bank, the desire was in my heart, and that’s all there was to it. I wanted to, so I did.The humble pastor went on to tell us how his family has prayed for paint, but God did not allow for it until now. “Many people in my country think pastors are becoming wealthy,” he said. I wondered what they would think of American celebrity pastors as wealthy as our athletes. He told us of how just that morning God revealed to him a lesson about protection. He said that God kept them from having the money to paint...

22.07.2013

Her brown eyes followed our van as we passed her on the bumpy road, looking through the windows at a dozen Americans conspicuously out of place in her neighborhood. We had come to bless a local Nicaraguan pastor by painting his house, a luxury for a man whose family can easily be without food. She spoke nothing to us, but I wondered what her words would be. What stories could she tell of living in such a place? Homes walled with black plastic sheeting; floors nothing but dirt. Garbage littering what passes for a road, leading to a neighborhood where children wander unattended and adults loiter because there is no job to be worked. I saw her for just seconds, but her face is on my mind tonight. She could be me.My natural reaction on any trip away from America is to pity the inhabitants of wherever I travel.“They just don’t know what they’re missing,” I think. Which is what? More electronic devices than there are people in the house? So much food that I toss expired bags full? So many channels to watch that I never have to converse with the people I love most?Maybe I’m the one who is...

20.07.2013

Tomorrow is a big deal for the new Mrs. Scott. From this point forward, it shall be known as 'the day Jennie got on a plane on purpose for the second time in one summer.'Kind of catchy.The first time was to catch a cruise ship out of Puerto Rico for a luxurious honeymoon where someone else turned down my bed and made cute animals out of my towels. Sunday is to go to Nicaragua for a mission trip where bats are said to fly through the house I'll be staying in and where I will have zero access to a hair dryer or flat iron.So the trips will be slightly different.Other than the plane ride, I'm so excited I can't stand it. If I could just be beamed up like Scotty, all would be well. However, beaming up technology hasn't made its way to me yet, so I'll be forced to zoom through the air at 500 miles an hour in an aluminum can.Can I get some pills, please?Suffice it to say I'm not the best traveler. I have what might be called in some circles a slight case of the panic attacks. My poor new husband still bears the...

21.01.2013

More than anything in this world, I want my children to seek the Lord. Yes, I'd like for them to do well in school and to choose career paths that are fulfilling and noble. I pray that they'll each find a lifelong love, and that their addresses will be no farther than a stone's throw away. I desire for them to know who they really are deep inside and what the passions that consume them are for. As all moms do, I have a laundry list of things I'd love for my children to experience. But more than all that, I just want them to know and love Jesus. The deepest desire of my heart is for them to desire Him.I want them to know what I know of His goodness, trust as I do in His provision, believe as I've come to in His faithfulness. I want them to revel in His Word, be consumed by His work, and devote themselves in His service. A struggle for me has been how to 'train up a child in the way he should go' while still ensuring that the choice is his. I don't want my children simply to follow in my religion;...

08.01.2013

I may be a girly-girl, but I definitely love me some college football. While the Clemson Tigers are my personal favorite, I enjoy watching any team play. I follow several players on Twitter, and a few of them tweeted the same thing following their teams’ victories – “God is good!” From what I know of these young men, they really do seek to follow the Lord, but I wonder… Would their tweets have been the same if their teams had lost?We hear so often that ‘God is good’ when people are on their personal mountaintops, experiencing favor and blessing, lacking no good thing. But when life is hard, a barren wasteland of hardship and confusion, that statement is not as often proclaimed. Why? Do we associate our ease with God’s goodness? Tangible blessing with love?I agree wholeheartedly that God is good, but it isn’t in victory that I’ve learned it. I came to believe in His goodness – His eternal, unchanging, omnipresent good – in my personal time of defeat, a time when no good was being poured out on me. I saw His good when all else was bad.What do we even mean when we say He is good? You...

17.12.2012

Like you, I am still in shock. Twenty babies were gunned down in their bright, cheerful school, innocently learning and unsuspecting of what was to come. Their faces haunt my thoughts, come to mind when I see the smiles of my own two children. I think of their parents’ grief and I weep, crying for their pain that I can never begin to understand. I see my children’s stockings and think of 20 that will never be filled. I watch my children’s chests rise and fall in peaceful sleep and know that there are parents who would give everything they have for just one more night. It doesn’t make any sense.How can a mother move forward when the children who grew within her will grow no more? How does a daddy walk past the bedroom where the child will never need tucking in again? How?It is more wrong than my words can express.In the midst of the sadness and need for understanding, one ray of light has shone. The teachers. We have all heard the accounts of their bravery and heroics, reading Christmas stories to innocents as bullets rained right outside. Finding crayons and coloring sheets to distract little ones while...

01.12.2012

She weighed just five pounds the day we brought her home from the hospital, no heavier in my arms than a bag of sugar. She was born too early, five weeks before her due date, and had to learn to eat on her own before she could be released to our care. Her tiny hands were bruised from fluid-giving IVs, and her preemie outfits swallowed her whole. A feeding tube gave her the nutrition she needed when she lost the strength to suck, and each feeding became agony as we willed her to swallow just one more ounce.In those earliest days, when she cried nonstop and was so physically fragile, I prayed protection for my sweet girl. “Please, Lord, help her to eat. Let all of her systems be working as they should, and keep her safe from anything that might hurt her.” He, faithfully, answered those prayers.As she grew in size and strength, she still cried nonstop and never slept more than 3 hours at a time. She was so hard to soothe, needing to be held all the time, and her demands seemed, some days, more than I could bear. Her brother was not yet two years old,...

17.11.2012

  When I was a gangly-legged fourth grader with a bad perm and unbraced teeth, an optometrist diagnosed me with myopia, or near-sightedness. I had been squinting at school, unable to read white chalk on green board, so mother took me to the eye doctor to get the problem fixed.  I will never forget walking outside with my brand new eyes, able to see individual leaves on fall trees and crisp words on billboards.  It was as if I were seeing for the first time. Everywhere I looked, wonders were visible. I could tell who was walking towards me before they were close enough to touch. I could make out images on the television from across the living room. This being able to see was a huge deal – I was impressed!  No longer limited to seeing just what was in front of me, I became aware of what was going on around me that I had been missing. I was able, quite literally, to see a bigger picture. My physical sight has been treated for over twenty years, although it needs tweaking every now and then. A slightly stronger prescription is sometimes necessary as eyes age and eye shape changes. Not too long ago,...

13.11.2012

Who would have guessed that quicksand can be holy ground? For anyone who has suffered a great loss or intense pain, doesn’t it feel sometimes as if the very earth on which you’re standing has become unstable? The tremors of a personal earthquake rock your once-firm footing, and you reach out for something – anything – to hold you fast. A deep chasm forms before your very eyes, and you feel yourself slipping towards its gaping opening… You know your demise is imminent and that the infinite darkness before you is your final destination.The quicksand holds you immobile, and try as you might, you cannot get out.Photo by Bentley B. Fulton, National GeographicThe enemy of our lives and souls wants us to believe that the difficulties we face are impossible to survive. He wants us to feel the shaking soil and panic, not believing that a Rescuer is on His way. He wants us, in the midst of the trial, to focus on the grip of the quicksand and not the Hand reaching down to save. And I fall for it, nearly every time. I feel the pressure, sense the unsteady floor, and believe that all is lost. In a...

01.11.2012

It seems as though it should be impossible, lifting hands in praise when tears are falling in grief, but praise in pain is the most authentic form. I have never see the goodness of God as clearly as while enduring the wickedness of the world, and I have never been as grateful for His presence as when I have been all alone.Why is our view of God so often dependent on our circumstances? Why do we publicly laud our God when troubles are small and happiness is abundant, yet question His love when plans go awry? He is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Heb. 13:8). He does not change, is always love. We should believe that He is loving more than we believe that the sun will rise, yet we question Him immediately if our way isn’t had.The act of praise, choosing to acknowledge the might, goodness, and uniqueness of the Almighty, has supernatural power to enact change. Abandoning oneself in adoration and thanksgiving can bring peace and perspective shifts desperately needed when emotions cloud our vision like morning fog. Over and over in Scripture we are exhorted to life His name and praise Him continually. “Praise the Lord! Praise...