Hello to you on this beautiful Monday!
If you’re anything like me you’re probably hoping this week goes a little smoother, a little less frantic and a little more balanced. Balance is what we’ve been taught to seek; especially us women. Now don’t worry, I’m not about to get all bra-burning, fem-bot on you—but balance has become such a hot topic in our culture and it’s a little overwhelming to be honest. We are constantly bombarded with news of chaos, hatred, death and fear of death and we cannot quiet this craving for calm.
Love, Family, Career, Friendships, Health, Fun – it all needs a place in our lives and if we fail to balance out all these significant, constantly shifting parts, we tend to feel like everything is about to implode. We may even feel at times that we are failing miserably at life if we don’t meet our own sense of balance. But what is true balance?
Is it promoting twice a year at your job, having a perfectly romantic marriage 4 out of 7 days a week, exercising daily, eating only organic home made dinners, volunteering for everything at the church and the kid’s school, praying 1 hour everyday before everyone wakes up, and still finding time to pluck your eyebrows?
I can easily fall into a trap of, “Well, my week didn’t go as planned because I failed to _____ (fill in the blank) and now I must bear the consequences of my lazy-bones.” That is precisely my point, if I leave balance up to my own standards, I will be driven by my own selfish ambition instead of God’s heart for my life. Now, don’t get me wrong, I believe we must create space for healthy practices in our life and we can do that by setting goals. But if my perfectly-planned week is ambushed by one phone call, or someone in the family gets sick, or God forbid, we discover a sinkhole in our driveway; how do I possibly maintain balance in the midst of all that? It’s easy for us to feel like we are out of sync when our schedule gets blown up by the unexpected. Instead of focusing on trying to balance everything that is out of our control, what if we practiced seeking God’s peace in the midst of it.
When I think about the most beautiful moments of peace – when I felt the Lord’s presence so near – times when I was surprised by joy and blessed beyond measure; those were not days of so-called-balance where everything was under control. Most often, those moments came in the middle of a hurricane, where all balance ceased to exist. I’m sure you’ve had those moments too; the day you got engaged, the day you gave birth to a child, the day you moved into your first home, the time you were sick and a friend surprised you with a meal. Tangible moments of love and peace in my heart, when I really knew that God was with me, moments when God used the chaos around me to experience his presence in a deep and profound way, was where I truly found a balanced heart.
A heart at peace.
So here’s my challenge to you this week: lay out all your plans before the Lord in thoughtful prayer, every good intention and heart’s desire. Ask God to lead you by His Spirit and by His word as you move throughout your day and week. Allow him to give you moments to pause throughout your day and don’t be afraid to act on what His Holy Spirit is asking you to do, even if it messes up your agenda. Pray that you will be able to release the things that are out of your control and to release those who you wish to control! Laying it all at His feet, and thanking Him for the ability to do so.
Here are some scriptures that may help direct your thoughts away from Self-directed balance and towards Spirit led peace: Psalm 63, Matthew 6:25-33, Psalm 119:105, Psalm 19