Thursday, July 30, 2009

Balancing Act

There’s something to be said for being in balance. We have to balance our checkbooks, our fun with our responsibilities, and our priorities. We even have to find a balance between living in the moment and planning for our futures (I find that to be a tough one).

Have you ever felt a bit out of balance? I don’t mean like when you have an inner ear infection and your equilibrium is unsteady … I mean when you feel like your ‘life’ is a bit lopsided? Feeling ‘out of balance’ can be caused by too much stress, your health, your marriage, your job, or often a schedule that’s just too demanding. Obviously some things we have control over and some we don’t. When that’s the case, it may be time to rethink things. We need to think of ways we can gain some of the balance back.

Young children often have big dreams for their future … growing up to be a fireman, an astronaut, a ballerina, or a doctor. But as we find ourselves getting older, we sometimes realize that our dreams have changed. Now many have desires to see their children grow and get married and start the next generation with kids of their own. There’s a lot of pleasure in seeing any of these dreams comes true.

Keeping something balanced, no matter what it is, will take effort and concentration – most things don’t just happen by chance. In Proverbs 16:11 it says “Honest scales and balances are from the Lord; all the weights in the bag are of his making.” I think the Lord wants us to have balanced, healthy and happy lives. We put our best foot forward and are most productive when we aren’t feeling overwhelmed or distracted. Some might say it’s about getting our priorities right, about determining what’s really important and what’s not. We can cross having an abundance of material things off our list. They’re just things. Maybe a good way to stay balanced and on course is to take a closer look at our current goals, as well as look back at some of the dreams we had when we were younger. Have you accomplished everything you set out to do? I know I haven’t and I’m sure I’m not alone. I seem to be drawn to the Proverbs lately. In Proverbs 16:9 it says “In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps.” Is there a more definite reason why some things don’t get completed when we want them to? Maybe it’s more about God’s timing.

Perhaps if you’re feeling a bit out of balance these days you need to take a closer look at the list of goals you have. Pick one you always wanted to achieve, but for whatever reason never did, and try again. Maybe it’s time to go back and finish the college degree you started many years ago, write a book, or be a mentor for someone. That’s the nice thing about goals – they come in many shapes and sizes and can be tweaked at any time to fit your current life. Maybe it is as simple as writing a letter or calling an old friend you haven’t talked to in ages or finally cleaning out and organizing your basement. Finishing something you started might be just the mental boost your life needs to get itself back on track.

Whatever is keeping your life off its steady axis these days, I hope you find the right combination and the support you need to get your sense of balance back.