Monday, July 28, 2008

My Personal Scotland

I've been back since Wednesday afternoon but haven't really had time to sit down and let you know how my time in Scotland went. In sum, in was a good trip. (Ask Jen what I mean generally when I say something is "good.")

Scotland has a long tradition of revival and awakenings. In my own life, I've had revival moments where my walk with the Lord seemed perfectly in step. Over the last few decades, Scotland has not enjoyed that and many are praying for another revival or awakening (or a series of them) to overrun the nation. And for the last several years, my own walk with the Lord has been in need of an awakening -- a return to right relationship with God.

Over my 2 weeks in Scotland, I had the privilege of working with a group from my church on a mission trip to Scotland to present a youth camp for about 37 students from all over Scotland. In trying to show these kids what a relationship with the Lord is about and all that it entails, the Lord has spoken to me anew. I've been reminded what my first priority should be -- and why. The Lord says I am the way, the truth and the life. He said He came so that we may have life and have it abundantly or life to the fullest.

That abundant life has been missing from my daily life for quite a while. In fact, I often wondered if I'd ever experience it again. Over the last 2 weeks, the Lord showed me there is no need to wonder. He is available. He is present. He is waiting to hear from me regularly. He wants me to learn His voice. And I want and need all of that as well.

Now I've known those things for going on 22 years. But the workaday world -- with its stresses and responsibilities and distractions -- piled layers upon layers on my heart that made it easier and easier to forget the importance and power that comes with a life in tune with the Lord's desires for me.

We shared with the students on this trip that the Lord has a plan for their lives. That He loves them. That He pursues them. That they are special in His eyes. And the more I shared that with the students, the more the Lord said the same things to me. And that felt so good. As it washed over my spirit.

Many students in Scotland struggle with feelings of hopelessness and worthlessness. In fact, Scotland as a whole struggles with these strongholds. Over the last 5+ years, I've been in my personal Scotland -- thinking I could never overcome the struggles in my life and wondering where the way out is -- if there even was one. Over this time in Scotland though, the Lord showed me that my situation is not hopeless, and I am not worthless. And my heart is awakening at the reality of that.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Scotland Bound

I know it's been a while since I posted, and now I'm posting from the Newark airport to tell you that I am going out of town and that it may be a while before I can post again. I am headed over to Scotland on a mission trip with my church. We will be putting on a summer camp for about 40 middle- and high-school age kids for a church that we have developed a relationship with. Pray that I have the energy to keep up with the youngsters on our team and at the camp. I can remember being that age, but it feels like a really long time ago.

I will try to get on here -- wireless connection permitting -- to post some updates about my perspective of the trip. However, if you want to catch up with how the team is doing, you can go the Scotland Team blog throughout the next 2 weeks to see how we are getting along.