If you are like me, because of the election, the world seems more unbalanced this past week than in a long long time. Today I am headed out to speak to a group of teachers to talk about getting things into balance. What we call “balance” has had a number of different expressions in scripture… Shalom, Eternal Life, Abundant Life, Garden of Eden, Kingdom of God, even Heaven.
There is an ecosystem throughout scripture that tells us what our priorities should be if we want this kind of divine balance in our lives. Jesus once had a discussion with a lawyer (Luke 10) about this balance:
The lawyer wanted eternal life. He asked Jesus if the way to get that was: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and neighbor (who Jesus later explains is no less than your enemy, stranger, friend, and family) as yourself.”
Jesus responded, “You have given the right answer; do this, and you will have life!”
The lawyer may be thinking “how do I get a ticket to heaven when I die,” but Jesus is thinking “life!” Eternal life is life with eternal purpose – a life that is balanced. Jesus was never focused on life after death. He was always focused on how we live in the here and now.
So this ecosystem of Jesus sets the priorities like this:
- Love God
- Love the Other – your enemy, the stranger, your friends, and your family
- Love yourself (This may be last, but it is not to be neglected! You cannot love God and others appropriately if you do not love yourself!)
The following is a spiritual practice that is designed to help you achieve balance. Practice it just one morning before the world takes hold of you that day and I can almost promise that you will be hooked! It will set your entire being into balance! (Note: You can right click on it and print it out.)
I have been doing this spiritual practice early each morning. It is working. I have been doing it again when I encounter hate and fear in myself and others. It is working then too.
God bless each of you this day. May you find eternal balance in your life!
Check out April’s Books, the Disorderly Parable Bible Studies, for group and individual study.