The necessity of balance is often learned the hard way… by a fall. Sometimes the fall is in isolation. You were walking minding your own business and not paying attention until your foot connected to something in front of you causing you to lose balance. One of the first things we instinctively do when we lose our balance and fall is look around to see if anyone else saw our tumble. Losing one's balance can feel embarrassing especially with witnesses. But the consequential fall creates a hard learned lesson to pay attention so the same mistake will not happen again.
I’ve heard countless messages on balance over the years and the primary target has often been carrying too much of one thing or another. The ministry is off balance with the family taking the front seat when it should be behind. The in-laws are off balance with the marriage creating an unstable and shaky relationship. The job is off balance with the children instigating an environment where their emotional and spiritual needs are impoverished although their physical needs are well met. I get it. Certainly not putting first things first can cause a dangerous fall.
However, I submit to you that not paying attention is often the culprit in regard to a lack of balance. It’s not seeing what’s right in front of us that creates a fall. It may not be that you were on your phone and completely did not see that rock or crack in the ground while walking; but perhaps your phone time made you miss a red flag in your child, your spouse, or your job. Even if the phone was pointed at your loved one for the sake of a TikTok or reel, you missed the subtle tones of their distress because your focus was on a good video. Hmmmm… maybe the focus was so much on ministry to others that the family you were leading fell face first because all of the attention was on ministry.
If there was ever a day where our eyes should be wide open and our minds attentive to the things we hold dear, it is now. I know, so much is pulling at you. Screens, devices, and people are vying for your attention. But when we become so focused on the unimportant, the entertainment, the extraneous, and yes even our religious duties we miss our step and fall. The thing about falling when you are a leader, parent, supervisor, spouse, is that others are undoubtedly bruised right along with you.
What’s the proactive strategy? Be in the moment. Mentally present in the moment rather than just physically present. When we are present we can actually see that pain behind the smile of our loved one, we can feel the concern in the spouses tone, we will sincerely express the excitement our loved one feels at an accomplishment, and we will know when and what to pray for of those we hold dearest simply by being in the moment.