To Balance or not to Balance…

I slept in today. I went to bed at a decent time, but slept really hard and still felt like lead in the morning. I didn’t even wake up to the usual thump–crash–scream of little feet.

The strange thing is that I just got back from a couple of very lovely and relaxing days at the coast with the man I love. Fabulous internet discount to a very nice hotel, delectable meals, gorgeous hike, tons of “us” time, and the precious and rare gift of sun and warmth at a Pacific Northwest beach. God spoiled us and my husband spoiled me.

How could I be so wasted? —I think it is a matter of balance. We had a glorious time reconnecting, refocusing, talking about life, and dreaming together. We explored and marveled at God’s creation. We held hands and just plain hung out. We were having such a grand time that we didn’t want to waste it sleeping. Up late and up early. We came home with our spirits refreshed and encouraged, and our bodies plum worn out. —Imbalance.

I’m not saying I think we ought to have done anything else, but it got me thinking. I don’t know if it is a human thing, a personality thing, or a maturity thing, but I am rather given to imbalance. Rarely do I manage to apply myself steadily and evenly to each of my various responsibilities, projects, and goals. I throw all my attention into one thing and neglect the rest until I simply can’t anymore.

I’m just getting going on this blogging thing—I’m excited about it. I want to spend hours everyday checking my stats, customizing my pages, writing posts, editing and uploading pictures, learning about blogrolls, and visiting others’ pages. Even when I’m doing other things, I’m thinking about when I can sneak away and get back to the fascinating world of WordPress.

Blogging is a good thing to do, but it really oughtn’t trump study time, bill paying, building homeschool curriculum, prepping meals, doing the laundry, keeping up on correspondence, going to sleep at night, or caring for my children. These are important and necessary activities—most of them are even enjoyable and rewarding. Still, when something new grabs my attention it takes a while for it to get comfortably integrated into the rest of my life.

The same is true for me spiritually. As my theology is developed and sharpened, I go through phases. When I am wrestling with a concept or truth from the Bible, for a while it colors, dominates, or even eclipses other, balancing truths. In the last couple of years I’ve seen this happen as I have struggled with the issue of women in ministry, the nature of God’s relationship to time and free will agents, and the purpose and duration of the sign gifts. I think that where I have landed is solid, but I’ve seen within myself the potential to really ride the pendulum.

Either a woman should never teach a man in the church or the Pauline passages concerning male/female relationships in the church have no meaning at all. Everything that ever has happened or will happen is God’s will or God’s hands are basically tied because of the kind of universe He has created. The gifts of the Spirit are rarely bestowed and should not be expected or their absence means a lack of faith. Yeee-Haw!

This wild ride may be just a part of the process of finding a nice, steady gait, but it can be dangerous. I have been guilty of taking off at a full gallop, applying a concept to my experience and letting it shape my view of God before I have reconciled it with the rest of God’s revelation. The result is often disillusionment, confusion, or frustration. Not pretty.

I would do well to remember this tendency when I feel myself derailing spiritually. Time to immerse myself in God’s Word and get back on course with a fuller picture of who He is. However, I can never ride the pendulum too far in the direction of making Christ my love, my life, my goal, and my purpose. Utter devotion to Him is never unbalanced. A total saturation of Jesus in every area of my life will never lead me astray.

The ocean is one those places where you just can't help but wonder at the glory of God!



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