What is True Balance?
My son taught me something about balance the other day when he sent us his first update from his mission trip this summer. Taylor is taking the summer off from seminary and on a mission with Rock Climbers for Christ.The last two weeks he has been in Bend, Oregon doing training and getting ready. Now, they are headed to British Columbia (via a few days in Washington) to start the official mission.
Here’s his note:
Between climbing, building relationships, and preparing to share the gospel with other climbers we tend to have some free time during the day. So, what do we do? We slack line – a 1 inch thick tubular webbing slung up between 2 trees about waist-high. It’s a training and recreation device used to gain balance, footwork, and focus. It is incredibly helpful in training and translates well in using technical moves in climbing. When your over 80 feet in the air and working to make your next clip; having focus, balance and good footwork can be the difference between falling (and being caught on the rope) and safely clipping your rope for peace of mind and climbing higher.
In my life, I’ve always leaned toward this ideal of balance and I have resonated deeply with Aristotle’s Golden Mean principle. But the more and more I seek this balance, the less I think I’ve sought God. I’ve sought this idea of balance, control and finding a good median in life. I’ve set my sights on not being in extremes of this life – don’t live reckless, and don’t be too scared to walk outside. Don’t be to proud, and don’t be humble in a fake way. These are just 2 very simple ideas of balance.
In slack lining, one of the tricks to finding a center of balance is to look straight ahead where the line meets the tree. You find less balance when you look down at your feet to focus on balance itself. Through this analogy, I’ve found that balance isn’t a principle to cling to in life. Balance is a result found in focus on God. It’s not a goal to strive for or obtain. I thought I’d found a short cut, a way to cheat the system, but I’ve found that when you try to cheat the system, you cheat yourself.
This was a good reminder for me. Lately, my life has been a roller coaster. There have been things happening that if they had gone through, life would have been hectic but with a lot less worry. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen and God is teaching me once again to wait on Him.
Most of my days seem out of focus and Taylor’s words reminded me that i need Balance…true balance from a singular focus on God. And that this balance can be found even when I am on a roller coaster. Thanks Taylor.