JennieGScott.com - Page 3 of 20 - Enjoying the Journey
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23.10.2017

  Humans are, by nature, goal-oriented. We are a people who plan for the future and work in the present for that unseen yet approaching reality. This is, perhaps, why we love our weekends so much. In our relationships, we know what we want and what we want to improve. I want to communicate my emotions better, and I want my marriage to be a model for my children. In our work, we set goals to motivate us when the day-to-day gets hard. I want to make more sales this quarter than last. In fitness, in faith, in housekeeping and health, we decide what's next and what we want to achieve. We're goal-setters. That's who we are. What do we do, then, when we meet a goal and are unsure of what's next? This is where I am. This is the space I'm living in right now. A place of uncertainty. In the last few weeks, I met every major goal I had planned. I released a book. I ran a marathon. I spoke at women's events. All of the things I had been planning for, thinking about, training for, and preparing for are over. They are done. The goals were set and achieved, and there's nothing huge on the horizon. Everyone keeps asking...

02.10.2017

  In South Carolina, you're never really sure when the hot weather is gone. A couple of weeks ago, we had a few glorious days when a cold front moved through, and I got so excited at the thought of crisp mornings and fall days. I envisioned sweater weather and boots, scarves and cozy sweatpants. But then the hot weather came back. With a vengeance. Ninety degree days at the end of September are torture. At that point you're just OVER it. Over the sweating, over the summer clothes that you've worn until you're tired of seeing them, and over sliding around on sweat-covered car seats. So when the air conditioning in your house begins making weird sounds three days before October begins, you know you have a problem. You can't count on cool days to keep the house pleasant, because October can feel like August. You have no choice. You have to call the air guy. Which we did. He left my house just a few minutes ago, and I can't stop thinking about the problem he said we have. The unit isn't broken, and it can still work. But there's a slow leak in the evaporator coil, which apparently is pretty important. He added some...

28.09.2017

  If one of the spiritual gifts is having a pity party, then the Holy Spirit blessed me immensely. But for real. Last night, I was feeling sorry for myself, wishing something had gone differently and beating myself up for not knowing ahead of time exactly what I should have done. Then the feeling sorry for myself morphed into being envious of someone else, and before I knew it, I was just the most pitiful little whiney-baby you've ever seen. Over nothing important. I felt like a failure, but the truth is that I didn't really fail. I felt less capable than someone else, but the truth is that I'm not. I felt I should be doing more and doing it better, but those are just words I told myself. In actuality, I'm doing OK. I'm doing better than I thought I was in the midst of that pity party.   Jon Acuff writes in his new book, Finish, "That's the thing about failure. It's loud. Progress, on the other hand, is quiet. It whispers. Perfectionism screams failure and hides progress." I have always lived with the tantalizing illusion of perfection mocking me. The perfect body, the perfect home, the perfect kids and perfect marriage. The perfect answers, the perfect friendships,...

20.09.2017

  Only hours before, I lay immobile on the operating table. Numb from the chest down, I could only watch as nurses draped the sterile field of my abdomen with blue cloth. They counted gauze strips and scalpels, forceps and scissors. They prepared my body for the birth of my child, a birth in which I would be a passive observer. Things were not going as I planned. Thankfully, I couldn't feel the incision dissecting my abdomen, the scalpel cutting through muscle to reach to my baby. Major surgery was done on the body I couldn't feel, bringing a healthy, crying boy into a world he didn't know. Now, they were asking me to stand and to walk. I had just been sliced open and sewn back up, and the medical team thought it best that I move. I couldn't stand up straight for fear of ripping the incision back open, and the epidural had barely worn off to give me feeling in my legs. But they were asking me to move. Medically, I knew their request was right. Moving after surgery prevents blood clots and pneumonia. Medically, it makes sense. But personally? I wanted to throttle someone. I wanted to stay in my bed and...

18.09.2017

  I've been praying a specific prayer for several years now. Years. But the answer still remains "no" -- or at least, "not yet." What do you do when you're confident the Holy Spirit has confirmed something in your life, but the time has not yet come? What do you do when you know what God has told you, but His timing is different than yours? And, even more, what do you do when you see someone else receiving the answer to the very prayer you've been praying? Can I be honest? Sometimes you cry and pitch a holy hissy fit. Sometimes you question God and beg to know what He's thinking. Sometimes you remind Him of what He said to you in the past, and sometimes you feel completely lost. I'm finding that trusting God is the hardest part of my faith journey. I believe in God -- I do. I believe He is good, I believe He hears me, and I believe He has a plan. But trust? I think trust is hard. Here's why: I can believe He is good, but I can struggle to trust He's being good to me in what He allows, answers, or denies. I can believe He hears me, but I can struggle to...

14.09.2017

  Tears streamed down my child's face, the frustration apparent. The frustration was clear, but the real issue wasn't. I couldn't get to the root of the matter. Was it exhaustion? A misunderstanding? Did something happen at school? What was really going on? I never figured it out. My questioning and probing did no good with the child sprawled across my bed, so I couldn't make sense of it. Which basically summarizes being a parent. I'll never forget bringing home a 5 pound newborn and listening to her cries in the night, wondering what they meant. Hunger? No, she just ate. Wet diaper? No, she was just changed. What was going on? Sometimes I never figured it out. I'm a person who likes to have answers. I sat in the front row in school, taking copious notes and comparing my answers to those in the back of the book. If I missed a question on a test, I couldn't let it go until given a thorough explanation. So even now, as an adult, I can't sleep until I feel like I've made sense of things in my mind. I don't do well with not knowing. But being a parent means often not having the right answer.  Where should...

10.09.2017

  We can always find a reason to feel badly about ourselves, can't we? No matter what we do, we can convince ourselves it should have been better, and no matter how well the day begins, we can always see a failure or a flaw in what has happened. I find myself falling into this trap so easily, the trap of believing I need to despise something about myself or my life. The trap of believing I am only and always falling short. The trap of discontentment. In just the past week, these are reasons I've been tempted to despise something about myself: Another mother's first day of school picture captured her beautiful flowers in the background, and my own flowers are all dead. I felt like I should hate myself because I don't have a green thumb. I looked down during my 19-mile run and noticed the cellulite on my upper thighs. Even though my legs can run 19 miles, I felt like I should hate them because they have cellulite. I couldn't tame the frizz in my hair Sunday morning before church and I felt like the insecure 12-year-old I used to be. I felt like I should hate myself because of...

05.09.2017

  There aren't many things I know for sure in life, but here are some that I do: I should have started lathering my face in Oil of Olay the day I was born. Strange things start happening to your skin in your mid-30s, and it's too late to prevent them when you actually begin to notice them. I physically cannot sleep past 8:00 am anymore. My eyes pop open even when my body begs for more rest. It's the darndest thing, and I now understand why elderly men cut grass at 7:00 am. They're up. Might as well be productive. You can't eat junk and expect exercise to burn it off. The McDonald's fries I used to eat by the pound now cause me to gain weight just by smelling them. A decreasing metabolism is real, y'all. Jesus, be near. My children's activity level increases in direct proportion to my need for quiet and rest. Nothing satisfies me more than spending an entire day reading.  The world doesn't end if I leave dirty dishes in the sink, unwashed laundry in the hamper, or a pile of mail on the counter. Coffee is a necessity. Finding coffee grounds in my cup,...

22.08.2017

  Her beautiful face smiled at me through the computer screen, the perfectly-lit picture just underneath the words describing her success. From my couch in my den, her life seemed perfect. Clear skin, white teeth, and a business making her family extra cash. I was still in my pajamas, looking at the mountain of unfolded laundry spilling out of the clothes basket. I was trying to muster the energy to begin my day's work, trying to convince myself that what I was doing even mattered at all. And before my morning coffee was even cool enough to drink, I branded myself a failure. I didn't know her, and I certainly didn't understand the details of her life, but through a post shared by a mutual friend, I saw a piece of her world. And the piece looked amazing. In that moment, I let myself believe that she and her perfect-looking life were my competition. That other woman? She felt like my enemy. ***** I walked down the aisles of the grocery store, hurriedly throwing items into the shopping cart, desperate to get home and cook dinner as quickly as possible. I had failed to plan ahead yet again, so rather than dinner waiting on my family, my family...

03.07.2017

  There's nothing worse than when someone tries to talk you out of your feelings. When they say, "You shouldn't feel that way," or "You're just being silly," what they're really saying is "What you are feeling is wrong." And maybe it is, but you feel what you feel. And regardless of its rightness or wrongness, what you need in the moment you feel it is understanding, not condemnation. Yesterday, a sweet friend messaged me, asking about a big project I'm working on. She's been there for me behind the scenes of it, cheering me along and encouraging me when I want to quit. Now that I'm very near the finish line, I told her what I'm feeling - "I'm terrified." Because I am. I'm terrified that it will be a flop, that my months of work will have been spent in vain and that people will reject the project outright. I'm scared that my project will not be anything anyone wants, and I'm scared that I'll never succeed and will only see failure. So I told her the truth, that I'm terrified. And because she's a wise friend, her reply was, "I know you are." She reminded me of some truths and encouraged me...