Be honest. How many times have you said, “I need more balance in my life?”
What if I told you that striving for balance might not be an ideal goal to strive for.
You’re probably saying to yourself, “I thought we’re supposed to live a balanced life?” Well, yes and no.
Striving for balance is good, providing you’re not trying to balance too many things.
Too many of us, especially women, and to go one step further, especially Christian women, have taken balance to mean that they must keep 20 balls juggling in the air at once. That’s not balance—that’s a circus act! LOL.
Does this sound like your life?
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- ‘Try’ to wake up early—but often have to hit the snooze button a couple of times
- ‘Try’ to make time for prayer—which is usually rushed
- Make a to-do list—most of which will not get done
- ‘Try’ to eat a healthy meal—sometimes it’s perfect, other times there’s no time to eat
- ‘Try’ to connect with some friends and family
- ‘Try’ to get through your list of errands
- ‘Try’ to organize your kid’s schedules, or manage your day around the grandchildren
- ‘Try’ to take care of some paperwork that’s piling up
- ‘Try’ to get to bed on time to get some decent sleep
- ‘Try’ to spend some quality time with your hubby
- Squeeze in a workout—some weeks are great and some weeks nothing
- Tidy the house—it’s usually a surface clean; one day you’ll organize those drawers and do some deep cleaning
- Take care of your church commitments
- Get in some me time—hair, nails, maybe even some shopping, but this is more of an exception than the rule
- Downtime, which ‘should’ be quality time, but you’re too tired to plan anything so you plop in front of the television or surf the net for longer than you want
- Most of the time you feel like you’re being pulled in a dozen different directions
The problem with balance
You’re trying to balance your life without being clear on your priorities, so instead of being productive, you end up becoming overwhelmed with too many tasks and fizzle out shortly after starting.
Get clear on what God has called YOU to do
To often, our definition of a balanced life is based on impossible standards of what it means to be a woman, or Christian, or mother.
Before you try to balance 101 things, you need to get clear on what God has called YOU to do.
Remember, it won’t (and shouldn’t) look like your friend’s, your neighbor’s, your sister, Clara’s, life or Martha Stewart’s life—it should be unique to your gifting, unique personality, values, and calling.
Getting to truly know yourself and your ‘real’ nature comes only when you spend time with your Father. Since He is your Creator, only He can give you true insight into yourself and truly direct your path.
Striving for balance can give you peace of mind, but too often, at the core of your striving, is often a need to feel like you’re in control—you want to get it all done; it gives you a sense of accomplishment; it makes you feel like you’re in control; it makes you and others around you feel good, but you must continually ask ourselves if it pleases God.
Pleasing God should be your motive for everything you do.
Check your motives? Are you striving for perfection? Are you striving to maintain control? Are you striving to win the approval of others?
Review all the things you’re trying to balance and ask yourself, ‘why?’ If you cannot say that the items on your to-do list are to glorify God, consider how to eliminate them from your life.
You don’t have to suddenly drop all of them at once, but realize that if God has called you to it, then He will equip you to do it—IN THE RIGHT SEASON. Not everything needs to be done now.
In the case of your health, frustration sets in because you want to get healthy but you still have too many other commitments, which make it impossible to try to squeeze it all in.
God’s word on balance (and priorities)
The book of Haggai gives us a sobering picture of the consequences of working out of season; working on the wrong priorities and for our own motives.
The Message Bible says:
“Take a good, hard look at your life.
Think it over.
You have spent a lot of money,
but you haven’t much to show for it.
You keep filling your plates,
but you never get filled up.
You keep drinking and drinking and drinking,
but you’re always thirsty.
You put on layer after layer of clothes,
but you can’t get warm.
And the people who work for you,
what are they getting out of it?
a leaky, rusted-out bucket, that’s what.
That’s why God-of-the-Angel-Armies said:
“Take a good, hard look at your life.
Think it over.”
Then God said:
“Here’s what I want you to do:
Climb into the hills and cut some timber.
Bring it down and rebuild the Temple.
Do it just for me. Honor me.
You’ve had great ambitions for yourselves,
but nothing has come of it.
The little you have brought to my Temple
I’ve blown away—there was nothing to it.
“And why?” (This is a Message from God-of-the-Angel-Armies, remember.) “Because while you’ve run around, caught up with taking care of your own houses, my Home is in ruins. That’s why.” Haggai 1:9-10
If you’re anything like me, and you find yourself striving to find balance—change your goal. We’re fighting a losing battle.
1. It’s time to get clear on your priorities, then get busy doing what God has called you to do. Don’t give your plans to God and ask Him to bless them. Reverse the order, ask Him to order your steps.
2. Once you’re clear that this is your season to improve your health, stop striving to find balance and start moving some things out of your way so you can make space in your life to do what it takes to get healthy.
Regardless of what popular culture will tell you, you CAN’T have it all (or at least not at the same time).
3. Give God the glory! Thank God for the ability to exercise, eat healthy foods, and reflect His glory by taking care of His temple. If He has called you to it, He will equip you to do it. So give Him thanks and praise (1 Thessalonians 5:24).
P.S. if you are tired of circling the same mountain over and over and want a Christ-centered approach to lasting weight loss without feeling guilty, deprived, or overwhelmed, be sure to sign up for our video course program right away at cathymorenzie.com