And don’t be concerned about what to eat and what to drink. Don’t worry about such things. These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers all over the world, but your Father already knows your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and he will give you everything you need. – Luke 12:29-31
On today’s show, Melinda asked the See Hear Love ladies how balanced their lives were on a scale of one to ten.
The answers averaged out to be about a six or seven.
Melinda, Cheryl, Joanna, and Abby talked about lots of good days when they felt their lives were going well in all areas. They also opened up about days when they focused too much on productivity, ignored their health or key relationships, and veered toward burnout.
As I watched the taping of the show, I wondered what my number would be. That day I’d managed to get all of the kids out the door, get the dogs fed, and get dressed in studio-appropriate clothes. And I had a smoothie for breakfast. That day, I was a solid nine out of ten.
Other days, my number is lower: like the day last week after I stayed up all night because one of the dogs tried to remove his own surgery stitches at midnight. I had yelled at the kids, been grumpy around my husband, and my lunch was a bag of chips – a family sized bag of chips. That day, I was maybe a two.
Why is it that living a continuously balanced life is so hard? One would think that with online shopping and robot vacuums, it would be easier than ever to live a life where our physical, emotional, and spiritual needs are all met. And yet more of us are feeling burned out than ever.
How is it that the Proverbs 31 woman was so together? She ran a successful business, nurtured her family, was always dressed beautifully, and was up at the crack of dawn doing chores. And she didn’t even have a smart phone!
But maybe that is, in part, why she was so together. Above all else, the Proverbs 31 woman feared the Lord: she looked to God first for guidance in everything. How many of us can say that? Upon waking, do you reach for your Bible or for your phone? Who do you talk to more in a day: God or Siri? When you have a few free moments, do you use it in silent prayer or scroll Instagram?
I’m terrible for this. I will sit in my office for some quiet prayer and reflection, and then remember that the newest episode of Dynasty is on Netflix. And I have to find out what Fallon Carrington is up to this week!
And then I wonder why 40 minutes later, I feel poor, unattractive, and completely devoid of energy. God has given us in His Word the road map for a balanced life and – once again – I’ve completely ignored it.
In Matthew 22:37, Jesus commands us to “love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ All. Not part of your heart, part of your soul, part of your mind. And certainly not with whatever’s left after binge-watching Netflix. God does not do this because he’s like Fallon Carrington and needs us to adore him 24/7. He does it because He made us and He knows how we need to live. He does it because He loves us and He wants the best for us.
In the story of Martha and Mary in Luke 10:38-42, Martha is running around getting everything perfect to entertain their friend Jesus, while “Mary, sat at the Lord’s feet, listening to what he taught.” Martha complains to Jesus that Mary is not doing enough, but Jesus points out that she is doing exactly what she is supposed to be doing. Sometimes we need to stop doing so much, and instead spend time with our Lord. Sometimes, by doing less we can do so much more.
There are a lot of magazine articles out there – some of which I have written – advising you on 10 ways to improve your life by doing blah blah blah! And while these articles can be useful tools to help us improve our lives in small ways, they are meaningless if we do not seek out God first for direction.
When things get to be too much, rather than pushing yourself further, take a step back and seek the Kingdom of God. Then watch as things start to fall into place. Because He, and only He, has can provide us with the guidance to live a ten out of ten kind of life.