"Even when the rainbow seems to pass right by me....I'm still finding Gold in the clouds....."

09 July 2014

Moving like a Mobile

In finishing the Bible study book (Living a Life of Balance) for the small group that I lead, I found myself doing a lot of reflecting on the various areas where  we need balance in our lives.

The main areas are physical health, mental health, emotional health, social/relational, career/work, spiritual health.

Spiritual health is the key, I think.

We are always juggling things in our lives.  Especially as moms.

We juggle the children and their activities, the housework after working all day, the groceries, the bills, the husband and date nights (hopefully!), the friendships, our health and work-outs, volunteering at schools, our family's health, our church responsibilities, our extended family.....and the list goes on and on.  Add to that, time for your self to renew and refresh spiritually and mentally/emotionally, and you have a lot on your plate!

Sometimes you need to learn to say NO.  One thing we learned from this study was that yes, we do need to do the work of the Lord. But we also need to learn to say "no" to certain ministries....or "wait"....and remember that not every ministry we want to serve in will be for a long season.  I gave the example of being a parenting instructor and counselor at a crisis pregnancy center that our former church from the 1990s and early 2000's was a part of.  I did this 2 days a week while raising 2 little girls and working at a pre-k part time. Iwas also active at the elementary school where my oldest was going at the time. Some of the clients at the center were difficult and after 5 years of volunteer work, I was burned out.  I said NO to more assignments there.  It was at this time that God moved us out of that church and into our new one....where we've now been for almost 8 years.  What refreshing of our souls occurred...we needed that change!!  And for the first 6 months, we basically did nothing except join classes and meet people.  It was fantastic. I felt like we had a fresh start on our lives spiritually, and as a family.

Fast forward to 8 years later and I am now working full time outside the home as a special educator.  I do have summers off and the school calendar and that's a blessing.  But I also have the oldest in college about 4 hours away, and the youngest is now a 10th grader who is in 3 clubs after school plus takes 3 ballet classes a week and is an active member of the youth group as well as volunteers at church on Saturday evenings.  I'm now leading a small group and my husband serves on the production team at church. Plus, we like to go on vacations together. We are also older so we need to work out consistently for optimal health.  If I miss days of working out (easy to do in the winter months!), my body doesn't like it...the degenerative disk disease in my lower back doesn't like it! and that can add yet another appointment to the already full calendar.  Add to that school concerts, church events and extended family events and......   we are busy!!  We don't always have time for extended family, yet we feel the pull to help out or visit.  So we have learned to say Yes to some things, and No to other things.  And it is very free-ing.  We sometimes say No to certain church events or other social events. and sometimes, after praying and seeking God's purposes, we say Yes.  It's all about balance!

And the other 6 moms in group (minus one)  work outside the home as well, and have husbands and  teens who are very involved in various activities!  So they all are busy, too!!

So...we learned how to keep a good balance in our lives.

I compare our lives  to wind chimes.

See the wind chimes in that photo above?  These are the kind I have hanging from the trellis on the side of my deck. They hang there all year round.  I love how they sound when the wind is blowing.  Even in the harsh, winter wind, they hang well.

WHY do they balance so well with out all the strings  getting tangled??

Because they have a good, solid foundation (the top piece)

And if we stand on the foundation....that which is God....we will  be well balanced, too!

What about when the storms come??  We have "storms" through-out life. Trials.  The Bible doesn't promise us that the Christian walk is easy.  In fact, it is hard to be a Christian in the world.  It's easy to be like everyone else.
 But...when the storms of life threaten to tangle us....we can pray and ask God to balance out whichever area needs work.  And we can wait patiently for Him.  We can ask for His direction, healing, guidance, teaching, comfort, and wisdom.

In this way, we will be balanced.

When the strong winter winds or bad thunderstorms of summer tangle up my wind chimes, I simply go out and gently unwind them, one layer at a time.  I look up to the top piece to find which string needs guiding. 

Just like I untangle those strands of chimes, so too does God untangle the difficult areas in our lives....no matter what they are, He is there...a firm foundation, to help us stay balanced.

I encourage you to keep Christ at the top.....He is the most important relationship we will ever have.  He needs to be first in a Believer's life.  All other areas will fall into place under His authority.  Our spouse, children, physical, mental, and emotional health, our finances, our friendships, our careers and our service.  Everything in our lives will be balanced when we take the time to spend with Him....our Savior.

Staying in the Scriptures, talking with Him, listening to Him....knowing Him.

photo courtesy of RenewedStrength website

Move like a mobile....free and unencumbered with a good foundation, allowing the wind of the Holy Spirit to pass over you...........allow your self to become intimate with Jesus.........

and to achieve that intimacy, remember the greatest commandment:

be blessed today!


Dianna said...

Faith, I was hoping I'd find this here this morning! Balance is so important and I could nod my head yes in the things you shared. I am a "doer" by nature and learning to say NO was a hard lesson for me to learn, but once I did it was just as you said, "free-ing"!

"Move like a mobile....free and unencumbered with a good foundation, allowing the wind of the Holy Spirit to pass over you...........allow your self to become intimate with Jesus........." Loved these words especially!

Thanks so much for sharing here Faith!

Mrs. C (Paula) said...

Great post, Faith. This is an area so many of us struggle with. We can't do it all, but thankfully the Lord will give us wisdom to find balance.

Susanne said...

Love, love, love this analogy! And as we allow God to be our foundation and keep us in balance our lives will have a beautiful, melodic sound instead of the clunky sound of a tangled and unbalanced mobile