The Myth of Living a Balanced Life

Saturday, May 27, 2017

juggler on unicycle

One of my all-time favorite TV shows is Seinfeld. What fascinates me about this classic sitcom is how a show about nothing reveals the hidden absurdities of our American culture and way of life. One of my favorite episodes revolves around the character of George and his attempt to keep his worlds from colliding. Inevitably his whole world implodes as his balancing act fails miserably.

This humorous episode exposes a myth that pervades our American culture. The myth I'm referring to is the concept of bringing balance to the separate areas of our life - self, home, work, and God. We have been led to believe that we will find peace when we find a way to balance these four areas. This is a myth which not only is impractical, it is not biblical. God never intended for us to keep these areas balanced or separate which is why, like the character George, our life seems to be one giant juggling act as we desperately try to keep these balls moving without dropping them. All it takes is for one little distraction or unanticipated event to cause all four to come crashing down on us.

Think of your life and these four areas as our solar system. The above concept is what is called a geocentric philosophy. It believes that self is the center and the other three areas revolve around it. Our job is to keep these three areas rotating smoothly around us without crashing into each other. The correct method is God-centric. It believes that God is the true center and everything else revolves around him. This is clearly stated in Proverbs 3:5-6.

"Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight."

Until we truly put Him at the center of our personal universe and allow everything else, especially self, to revolve around Him we will never achieve balance in life. When we become geocentric or self-centric, we create a continual state of chaos and tension in life. When we learn to become God-centric we find true balance and peace. When we make life revolve around us we then we become responsible for creating balance. However, when we make life revolve around God he is the one who brings balance. Notice what the verse in Proverbs says - "In all your ways submit to him, and HE will make your paths straight."

Do you find yourself struggling with balance? Do you seem to be overwhelmed by all that life is throwing at you? Perhaps your universe is out of alignment and you are self-centric. Try instead to put God at the center of every area of your life and let him bring peace amidst the chaos. Let him make your paths straight and show you a better way. I have found that when I try to make my world revolve around me I just end up creating more chaos, but when I get out of the way and let God take center stage, life becomes so much more peaceful.

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