With the current economic times it seems to me that the American lifestyle is no longer burning the candle at both ends. It is now a frantic relay of lighting match after match to try to set fire to the middle as well! Making both ends meet is taking all our energy and straining our relationships leaving us feeling empty and alone.
Life is stressful when it’s all off kilter, but is it just economics throwing us out of balance? Or could it be that perhaps we:
- Have too many goals that are in conflict with one another.
- Have no goals and are letting our lives be swept along by … ?
- Have hearts cluttered with other people’s agendas for us.
Or maybe we haven’t truly settled our heart’s attitude toward God and others
- We think that in order to please God we must do more for Him.
- We resent others because we believe we need their approval.
- We feel guilty because our family wants us to do less for others, and more for them.
- We believe that being busy = being important, spiritual or valuable.
One way to consider if your life is out of balance is to look at how much time you spend enjoying your relationships. In the beginning God said, “It is not good for man to be alone.” (Genesis 2:18) Loneliness is still not good. But who has time to engage in relationships when life is so full of demands? It’s not that we don’t have time with people when we are stressed, it’s just that we don’t have time for them.
Don’t you just wish you had a personal time-management consultant?
I believe Jesus wants to be that consultant. He has much wisdom to offer us on how to put our life into balance. Think about how He modeled His life:
- He was full of peace, compassion and unconditional love even when under tremendous stress.
- He was often walking and talking w/ friends about things that matter.
- He was always giving of Himself to feed, heal or teach others.
It seems to me that His secret was in the fact that He consistently took time alone to pray and seek God, even if it meant getting up early, staying up late, or giving up food; He always found time to sneak away from the crowds which, by the way, had legitimate needs that He was willing and able to meet.
Perhaps the greatest secret was that He wasn’t so prideful to think that He had to do it all…
Lord, help us to cast our cares over to you and to keep our relationship with you the highest priority. Teach us to give more of ourselves to others, because it is in seeking you and in blessing your people that we find our peace and satisfaction. Guide us in knowing when it is our pride that is pressing us to do more, and make us able to find the balance between striving and sitting. Make us more like Jesus. In His name, amen.