Balance is not static.
Go ahead – stand on one leg. Can you stand there, perfectly still? Not a single twitch?
Balance is dynamic!
Can you stand there, as your leg and core make continuous, small, shifts and changes to keep you upright?
I learned this lesson during a post-baby-workout-video. As I wobbled, attempting a standing-on-one-leg stretch, the instructor calmly stated that balance is dynamic. There are always small adjustments that need to be made to maintain balance.
I heard a busy, world-travelling, Bible teacher answer the question, “How do you keep all of your priorities straight?” by saying, “I am always straightening them!”
This is life, right? We long for the illusion of a balanced and perfect life where once the dishes are done and put away the task is done, and there will be no more dishes. Ever.
Or maybe you’ve caught yourself saying,
… if I can just get my finances in order I will stop working so much.
or … when the kids are older I’ll pursue that dream.
or … once this project is finished I can spend more time with my family.
I really do wish I could do the dishes, and they would be done. Forever. But that’s not real life. Real life is not static. Real life is shifting and changing. Real life will demand that you continually straighten your priorities, and shift the demands on your time so that you can stay healthy and upright. Balanced.
A non-compromising priority for all of us should be time with God. In His Word. Worshipping. Talking. Loving.
I learned a trick in middle-school gym class about this same stretch. If I kept my eyes fixed on a point in front of me, it was much easier to stay upright, balanced on one leg. While the other kids were flailing and falling, I could stay upright by just looking at that spot. Scripture tell us to fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith [Hebrews 12:2]. In life, to maintain balance, we must always keep Jesus as our point of reference, so when others are tumbling all around us, we remain stable and fixed.
The busier my life gets, the easier it is to shift making God my first priority. The further down the list God gets put, the less productive (and more cranky) I become. Spending time with God not only strengthens me, it’s where I get his perspective for the tasks, relationships, and circumstances ahead of me. Spending time with the Author of Life keeps me focused on what is important now, and what can wait another day. Communing with the Holy Spirit gives me peace and joy to face whatever might come my way.
A verse that I think about often is Psalms 39:4
“Show me, O LORD, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life.”
When we look to God, and realize that we are here for just a moment, and that moment determines how we will spend eternity, our perspective is changed. We can move from frustrated at the person that didn’t get your coffee order right, to compassionate and understanding. We have already prepared ourselves, by spending time with God, to hear his heart for the people we will encounter, and offer up prayers on their behalf!
There are times when God tells me to focus more time and energy on my daughter, husband, or other relationship. There are times God tells me that I need to just take a nap, or call the babysitter so that I can stay upright and balanced. Spending time with God everyday allows me to hear his subtle instructions in every area, helping me to make the minor shifts and changes as I live each day.
The Psalmist goes on in verse 7 to say:
“But now, Lord, what do I look for? My hope is in you.” Psalm 39:7
Whatever you are facing today, whatever is thrown in your path, know that it is temporary, and put your hope in God. Look to him to show you how to readjust, shift, and balance the many things in your life.
What is a key you have found to maintaining balance in your life?