I recently wrote a blog post, titled “Orphan or Adopted?”. In that post I explored the difference between being a child of God and knowing there is a God, but not having the benefit of being his child. That thought has caused me to reflect on the concept of balance.
I have always been conscious of the need for balance in my adult life. Jenny and I married young and were diligent about ensuring we had a strong spiritual life, good employment, and budgeted to live well within our means. As we had children, I made adjustments to ensure that I balanced religious obligations, work and family. In many ways it was a tough balancing act. If I gave too much to others, through my religious outlets or work, my family would suffer. If I gave too much to my family, my work and religious obligations would suffer. This struggle is not new. Many books have been written on the subject and I admit that I have sought enlightenment from the pages of those books on many occasions.
As I have been thinking about the life and mindset of an orphan, compared to that of an adopted child, I am forced to reconsider what I have always thought of as life balance. According to Jesus, in Matthew 6:25-33, the balance is very skewed in favor of God’s kingdom. This does not fit well with what I have always thought of as balance, but would certainly be easier than the balancing act that I identified in the above paragraph. Imagine that you did not have to provide a place to live, clothes to wear or food to eat! You would be free to simply do what God tells you to, without concern for rent/mortgage, food or clothing. I believe that would completely eliminate the striving that comes from attempting to balance religious obligations, work and family.
The balance that Jesus laid out sounds great, so why is this not the norm for Christ followers? I believe that we have been tricked into giving up our status as children and have bought into the mindset of an orphan. As a result, we try to balance God stuff, family and working to survive because if we don’t, we believe that no one else will.
I challenge you today with this thought: How would your life look different if you were no longer responsible for your needs?