Have you noticed how our culture has discovered a new
virtue, ‘balance’? We want balanced diets, which I reluctantly admit is a good
thing, but mostly folks want balanced lives. We have assumed an obsession with
balance that matches ancient oriental philosophies.
I don’t think I could lead a balanced life and I don’t think
I would enjoy it if I could. There are seasons and rhythms to life that require
that we match them with our own rhythms and adjustments.
Try standing with your feet shoulder width apart with your
weight evenly distributed. Now move forward! It is impossible to move forward
without disrupting that perfect balance. The only perfectly balanced person is
an immobile one.
Jesus, who we are called to follow, seems to have led a life
in tune with the rhythms of the Spirit; those quiet years before His Baptism,
the years teaching and mentoring His disciples, that final frenetic week, and
so on. He leads a life of unhurried urgency to be about His Father’s business.
If I want to follow the radical Christ I must above all
strive to fall into rhythm with Him. There will be various seasons which will
require differing levels and kinds of activity. Some will be times of
recreation and recharging. I want to lean heavily into those. Some will be
times of consistent sowing and I want to lean just heavily into those. Some
will be times of grieving and I must throw myself as radically into those. Over
all, things may balance out, though I am not at all certain of that.
Recently I have been enjoying a time of recharging. I have
purposely decided to ‘lean heavily’ into this time. It has been a Sabbath, time
for me. Linda and I have just returned from a short visit to St. Andrews which
is one of the most beautiful spots in Maritime Canada. I gave myself over
wholeheartedly to this season. Now we are getting ready for our annual Deer Island
Vacation with the folks of Up Town. This will require a whole different
commitment, and in its own way I expect I will enjoy it as much.
To move, to follow, these require us to forsake the idol balance
and trust Him. Some may so fear burnout that they refuse this kind of
commitment, but I rather suspect burnout comes when we are out of rhythm (sync)
with the Spirit. One of the books I have been reading is “The Faith of Leap” by
Michael Frost and Alan Hirsch. This book is clarion call to embrace “a theology
of risk, adventure, and courage.” This may run against the grain of staid Canadian
culture (even Church culture) but it strikes me this is central to Biblical