Finding Balance Within Ourselves
All things are lawful for me, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be mastered by anything (1 Corinthians 6:12)
I subscribe to Neil Anderson’s daily devotional. Neil was the founder of Freedom in Christ Ministries. This week (February 7), I was particularly challenged by how careful we are to be about our own behavior, not the behavior of others. I can think of some reasons why:
- I am the only person I can control. I can’t control another person on this planet.
- God asks me to give an account for my life, not the lives of others (Romans 14:11-12). Keeping my own life pure is enough to worry about!
- The enemy is out to get me and render me ineffectual for the kingdom of God (1 Peter 5:8). I need to be on the look-out for his cunning strategies.
Regarding cunning strategies, Neil presented twenty lines that we can cross from being wise and healthy in our actions, to being unwise and destructive…sinful, in fact. Ten of them spoke to me as lines women in America might struggle with. Many women in the United States have enough wealth to protect our children (or try), enough discretionary income to spend on beauty, ownership of technology that makes communication easy, food in our fridge, and some leisure time. These are such blessings and we are to be grateful and enjoy the blessings. But I was struck this week with how each good category has a line that can be crossed. Let’s all lean in hard with tender hearts so we can identify the lines in every area of our lives and know the instant our toe steps across one so we can make an immediate adjustment.
- physical rest becomes laziness
- enjoyment of life becomes intemperance (lack of moderation or restraint)
- interest in the possessions of others becomes covetousness
- enjoyment of food becomes gluttony
- self-care becomes selfishness (hmmm)
- self-respect becomes conceit (never thought of that)
- communication becomes gossip
- cautiousness becomes unbelief (so subtle)
- lovingkindness becomes overprotection (ouch)
- conscientiousness becomes perfectionism
- carefulness becomes fear (ugh)
Do you have a favorite? Do you have an example to share? I would love to hear.
Meanwhile, we can share in a prayer Neil included in his post: Lord, I seek Your balance in my life today to do what is profitable without being mastered by anything, even good things.
Picture Explanation: All things red and pink. Happy Valentine’s Day. Celebrate God’s love for you. Celebrate friendship. Celebrate the people who not only love you, but like you too.
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