A Balanced Life?

A balanced life is something we think a good thing. But what do we mean by “balance?” If you listen to the Catalyst podcast you may have heard Erwin McManus talk about balance (I don’t remember if it was episode 52 or episode 24. Both are worth listening to). As long as balance means something like a little of this, a little of that, nothing to the extreme, he wasn’t a fan. He wants to be all out for Jesus.

John Stackhouse, in Making the Best of It sums up after talking about the importance and fruitfulness of interruptions in our life (Illustrated in the life of Phillip in Acts 8):

“In sum, we can retain the ideal of a balanced life, but now in a way radically qualified by our understanding of mission and vocation. Balance in this case is not the balance of a dancer raised on one foot, or even of a spinning top. It is much more dynamic: the balance of a runner traversing a broken-up and heaving landscape. To maintain the balance for this step and to prepare well for the next step. the runner might well have to lean way off center – to be deliberately off-balance in terms of a snapshot, but properly balanced in terms of a journey. This metaphor thus rules out both the idea of a detailed template in which every Christian life ought to be lived and also utter confusion in no option, no matter how extreme, can be judged as wrong. The proof is in the success of the journey. Missteps of either sort – trying to maintain a static, universal ideal or indulging in capricious impulse – will result in a fall. The question is, does the runner keep going toward the goal?”

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