Striking a Balance

We are all familiar with the aerialist performing on the high wire, and the great risk he takes as he balances himself with nothing to support him but the tightrope upon which he walks. For him, balance is the name of the game. Usually carrying a rod to maintain an even keel, every light vibration and every gentle breeze are all factors which he takes into careful consideration as he traverses the expanse over which the line is spread.

One of the most important concepts in our journey upon this earth is that of striking a balance for our own lives. We put forth serious efforts to get enough sleep, proper diet, exercise for the body, and the like.

Physical exercise is important for our bodies, so that we may attain a healthy physical balance. In so doing we can maintain our own even keel. Paul recognized the value of physical exercise as he wrote to the young preacher, Timothy..

1 Tim 4:8 For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come.

Here, Paul was not saying that physical exercise is of no use, but had, indeed, some benefit. But, of greater value is the exercise for the soul in godliness, having everlasting benefits, as well as benefits for the here and now.

A good diet consisting of healthy food whereby we gain essential nutrition is also required to maintain our bodies in peak performance. If we depend upon fast foods and overload ourselves with sweets, soon we will see these poor habits affect many aspects of our health and performance. As well as good nutritional habits in partaking of healthy foods, we should also:

1 Peter 2:2 As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:

This, of course is referring to one's desire to grow spiritually: the spiritual food having spiritual nutritional value is the word of God.

There is an emotional balance for us to keep so that we do not “go off the deep end,” losing our perspective. One who is not emotionally adjusted creates all sorts of problems for himself. So it is in the spiritual realm as well. We are to be serious about our salvation, but not overbearing in manner: serious about controlling our appetites, yet allowing room for relaxation and enjoyment: serious about our focus on spiritual matters, but not manipulative, overbearing, nor controlling.

These passages teach that Christians of all ages are to be sober minded.

1 Thess 5:6 Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober.
Titus 2:11 But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine: 2 That the aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience. 3 The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things; 4 That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, 5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed. 6 Young men likewise exhort to be sober minded.
1 Peter 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

This is sound doctrine, of course, that we all will make adequate preparation for eternity. The condition and disposition of our souls is paramount given the finality of judgment if, on the day of judgment, we are found wanting.

Yet, if one takes these verses and tailors his attitudes and behaviors to such a degree that he becomes prudish, down-right disagreeable, or perhaps best described as a sourpuss, then he has taken a tack which is way off course when considering other passages.

Prov 17:2 A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.
Prov 18:14 The spirit of a man will sustain his infirmity; but a wounded spirit who can bear?

The wise man noted that a pleasant disposition does wonders for our health, both mental and physical. As Christians who are interested in keeping that even keel, and being well adjusted, let us maintain those healthy habits which serve to prevent ourselves from becoming spiritually unbalanced.

Curtis A. Little, Royse City, TX

Curtis A. Little
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