How do you find balance in life? Today I’m thrilled to introduce you to my blogging friend Rebekah Hargraves. Rebekah has a lot of really great things to say, so I’m sure you’ll enjoy her post today. Don’t forget to leave a comment or to visit her own website in return!
The True Key to Finding Balance in Life
Balance. That has become such a buzzword these days in a culture characterized by excessive busyness, stress, and misplaced priorities. We are all seeking balance – we scroll through Pinterest trying to find the latest and greatest blog post on the topic, we regularly ask other women how they “do it all”, and we pick their brains and glean as much wisdom and practical how-to advice as we possibly can. We think that if we only implement their tactics or their routines, then all will be well in our lives and we will have finally arrived at the oftentimes elusive, yet much sought after, feeling of having balance in our everyday.
Today, however, I am going to encourage you to take a different approach, founded upon a different mindset, and that is this:
I believe we will find balance in life through being in the Word of God.
Why balance will not Ultimately be Found in a Self-Help Book or Ten-Step Program
It is my desire today to encourage you to find your balance and your plan for action in this area of your life primarily in God’s Word rather than in the writings of man. I’m not at all saying there are not some really beneficial tips, tricks, and ideas to be found in other books, blogs, or resources. However, I do believe we need to start here first, at the ultimate source of wisdom, with the One who made us and therefore knows us best – what makes us tick, how we work, our individual personalities, etc. He knows our inner workings better than any self-help author or motivational speaker ever could.
Let’s not make the mistake of first seeking the wisdom of man, while relegating the wisdom of God to the back burner. People are all different, so one method of cultivating balance that works for your sister or your mom or your best friend will not necessarily be what works for you. This is why it is important to first look to God’s Word – that is where you will truly find the relevant help, vision, direction, and wisdom for planning that you seek. James 1:5 assures us that if we ask the Lord for wisdom, we are guaranteed to be given it. So, start there.
How Being in the Word will Lead to Balance in Your Life
There are three great ways in which spending time with the Lord in His Word and through prayer can lead to your beginning to achieve the balance you long for in your life.
#1 – God’s Word Helps You Understand Priorities
It is in God’s Word that you come to understand what the priorities in your life ought to be, as well as how to correctly order those priorities.
One of the main reasons we are all clamoring after the development of balance in our lives is because we truly do want to focus on what matters most in life. We don’t want to waste this one life the Lord has given us. We want to give our very best to our husbands, our children, our homes, our friends, our neighbors, etc. But so often we fail to do so because we fail to understand, at the core, what the main priorities for any given season in our life ought to be and how to correctly order those priorities.
This is why it is crucial to regularly be in the Word. Not only should our relationship with the Lord come first, anyway, but we are able to see in Scripture outlined for us what our proper ordering of priorities ought to be as busy wives, mamas, and homemakers.
For example, as I have written about before, we see in the Word that our relationship with our husbands ought to come first in our lives ahead of all other earthly human relationships (and second only to our relationship with God). We pick up on this truth in passages such as Genesis 2:18, where we see that the very reason we were created as women was in order to be helpers suitable to our husbands. Likewise, the famous passage of Proverbs 31:10-31 begins not with the Proverbs 31 woman being praised for being an excellent mother or an industrious keeper of her home. No, it begins first with her being exalted for being an excellent wife, for being the sort of wife whose husband can trust in and fully rely on, and who works to do her husband “good and not evil all the days of her life”.
In the Word we see that the proper order of priorities in the life of a wife and mother are to be as follows: relationship with God, relationship with husband, relationship with children, homemaking duties, and then all other outside pursuits – friends, neighbors, hobbies, businesses, etc.
So, you see, pursuing balance in your life comes first through understanding both 1) what your priorities ought to be and 2) how they are to be ordered. Wisdom and truth in this area are only to be found in God’s Word.
#2 – God’s Word Helps You Order Your Priorities
It is in God’s Word where you can begin to learn how to order your day according to those priorities.
Now that you are regularly spending time in the Word and have come to a Biblical understanding of your priorities, you can look to the Lord for insight and wisdom as to how you ought to order your day according to those priorities – what rituals and routines you should have, what activities you should say yes to and which you should say no to, etc.
We see in Proverbs 31:10-31 that this excellent woman had many different pursuits – she was a virtuous wife; she was a mother whose children revered and adored her; she was a hardworking, industrious, businesswoman; and she did not eat the bread of idleness, but instead looked well to the ways of her household. She understood what her right priorities were and patterned her days in such a way so as to be able to be faithful to those God-given priorities.
Clearly, she was instilling work and effort and love into her marriage on a regular basis, for she had a husband who fully trusted in her and who could rely on her to not only do him good as her husband, but to also so wisely handle household affairs that she was able to go about making various business decisions while he was busy leading in the city gates. Likewise, when it comes to her children, she clearly had instilled work, effort, and love into her mothering, as well, for her children adored and exalted her. She was intentional with her children, showing them love, grace, truth, wisdom, and kindness, and they loved her for it.
On both the home front and business side of things, she was wise and industrious. She was the furthest thing from idle; she was understanding of the concepts of wise business dealings, money and other financial affairs; privy to the ways of health and wellness as pertaining to good food, knowledgeable of the importance of looking ahead to future needs and providing for them now, etc.
In order to have such wonderful fruit produced in her life, she had to first understand what her God-given roles were, which ones were to be placed above others, and how to order her day so as to be faithful in all of them.
Remember – we are promised in James 1:5 to be given wisdom when we ask for it. So, seek the Lord and His wisdom as to how your day-to-day life should be planned out and what people, pursuits, activities, etc. ought to be given what amounts of your time. Do remember in the midst of all this, though, to be flexible for those times when “life happens” and unexpected interruptions or needs do occur.
#3 – God’s Word Helps Us Incorporate our Priorities
It is in God’s Word where you can discover ways to actually incorporate that plan into your daily life.
After you have determined what your priorities ought to be, how they are to be ordered in level of importance, and how you can set up a plan for how to structure your day in order to follow through in faithfulness to those priorities, we still are not finished with all that the Lord has to offer us in the area of help in finding balance for our lives!
We are also equipped, in God’s Word, with the wisdom required to actually put that plan we have made into practice. Truly, the Book of Proverbs is our manual for day-to-day living. In it, we find such practical, helpful insights as warnings against loving sleep and being a slave thereto (Proverbs 20:13), admonitions to not be lazy and slothful (Ecclesiastes 10:18, Proverbs 6:6-11, Colossians 3:17, Proverbs 13:4, Proverbs 10:5), and much more. We are taught which things to cut out of our lives (i.e. slothfulness/unending scrolling through social media, as well as excessive sleep), that our time might be freed up for those pursuits of utmost eternal significance and importance.
Keeping First Things First
There are undoubtedly wonderful, practical, helpful resources out there which offer great tips and tricks for achieving balance in your everyday life, and there is nothing at all wrong with seeking out these resources and learning from them. But, in so doing, we need to always remember to keep first things first.
Look first and foremost to the Lord and His Word, seek His wisdom and direction in prayer, and heed the leading of the Holy Spirit. The Lord knows the unique details and life circumstances of your own individual family unit and therefore can equip you to live life well with your family better than any other resource out there ever could. Look to Him, friend! He yearns to free you from your bondage to busyness, imbalance, and misplaced priorities. His yoke is easy and His burden is light and His strength and wisdom are yours for the taking. Take hold of them and start living that life of balance you have been yearning for!
About Rebekah Hargraves
Rebekah Hargraves is a twenty-something Christian, wife, mama, homemaker, homeschool graduate, writer, home business owner, blogger, and Texas-native-turned-Tennessean. How’s that for a mouthful? Her passions include being a helpmeet to her husband, going on once-a-month dates, drinking coffee, writing, homemaking, crafting, cooking and baking, hospitality, enjoying silly dance parties with her little girl, candles, music, reading, and being a student of many topics.
You can visit her website by clicking here.