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Friday, April 15, 2016

American Idol's Scott MacIntyre: Walking By Faith, Not By Sight

by Cyrus Webb

His book BY FAITH, NOT BY SIGHT was chosen as one of my top reads of 2012, but it was my conversation with American Idol Alum Scott MacIntyre that told me his story needed to be included in this magazine. Throughout everything that he has endured in his young life, Scott has remained steadfast in his belief that there is always something better ahead.

The lessons he has learned are ones I wanted to share to help guide you through your own challenges.

SCOTT ON BEING AN INSPIRATION: "It is amazing and very humbling how people have responded to my story. When we first got the book out in stores it was really humbling to hear back from people about how it was touching them where they were hurting and needed inspiration. I feel very honored to bring them a message like that."

SCOTT ON HIS FAITH: "The main thing for me is my faith. I'm a Christian. It has kept me grounded no matter what I've faced. It's because of the challenges I've faced that I've been able to stay grounded as well. I am so grateful to be alive and even make music. I try to always be the same person I am on camera that I am off camera."

SCOTT ON THE ROLE OF FAMILY: "Family is huge for me. That is where I got my sense of being able to persevere and pursue my dreams. When I was born blind my parents could have chosen to be been upset and bitter. They didn't choose that. They chose to see the beauty in the situation. Whenever I face an obstacle, I know I have that choice. I can choose to be frustrated and upset or see the beauty in life every single day. I choose the latter."

SCOTT ON HIS ATTITUDE:  "I think when obstacles pop up or when people face uncertainty some of us have a tendency to focus on the negative by default and gloss over what we might learn from the situation. If you choose to say this is a tough situation but let me try to focus on some of the good things I guarantee you will be able to find the silver lining in the clouds."

"I had my love of music. It compensated for my lack of vision. I chose to focus on what I could do and not what I couldn't. I say to people in a loving way that there is no obstacle too big or hurt too deep that you can't overcome if you walk by faith not by sight. There are so many situations in life where you can't see where you're going. None of us can predict everything about where we are going to be in a few days or years. It's easy to get caught up in that uncertainty. Don't worry about the steps along the way and focus on the end goal. If you do that, you will succeed."

Scott MacIntyre's very existence is a proof of the power of faith. When you can believe and embrace something larger than yourself and your current circumstances then you learn what it means to trust in the Lord with all your heart. "When I was 19 years old I was diagnosed with stage 4 kidney failure," he told me. "It scared me. I felt hopeless and overwhelmed. I was so weak I couldn't sing or play the piano in my own living room." Thanks to the generous gift of a family friend he was able to get a new kidney and not even a year later he was on American Idol. "It's not so much about where I am now but the journey I traveled to get here," he says. "As long as I am breathing I believe there is still hope."

His encouragement for you? "If you want to live an exciting life you have to run for it. This is a race for living. I haven't stopped running... I try to make the most of every day."

You can stay abreast of all of Scott's activities on his website and his Twitter handle @scottdmacintyre.

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