Archive - Balanced Life

Is Church Service Stealing Your Time for Christ?

Church Service Stealing Time

The following is a guest post from Joy Collado.

One of the best ways for us to serve God is to offer our services in our church. Our faiths and fellowship with others are strengthened and renewed.

I’ve often dreamed of working for our local church. Perhaps you can call me a “church lurker.” I go to church religiously, sit there and sing praises, listen to the sermon, and then go home. I always thought, I wished there was a way for me to serve God more than sitting in the pew and listening to the pastors.
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How to Avoid the Fate of the Sluggard

How to Avoid the Fate of a Sluggard

Imagine the misery of intense financial stress coming into your life suddenly one day. Quickly, unseen, and powerfully.

Because that’s the warning that Proverbs has concerning the sluggard: “A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man.”

The results of laziness shouldn’t be a surprise, but yet they sneak up on the sluggard. And not because of one intense act on his part but the culmination of many little acts of sloth.

And this got me thinking. What’s the difference between rest and what the sluggard does? Didn’t Jesus rest? How do I know if I’m being a sluggard? How do I know if I’m inching my way slowly toward poverty, want, and a wasted life?

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Busy Is Good

Busyness Is Good

I don’t know how it is where you live, but down in the South we regularly ask people how they’re doing. It’s a combination of politeness and unthinking tradition, and the answers are usually just as automatic.

“Really busy” is a reply I often hear. I normally respond with something like: “Busy’s good. Busy pays the bills.” It’s a light-hearted attempt at helping people focus on the positive.

But there is some truth to my joke. Busyness isn’t really the enemy we think it is.

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Release Today: What’s Best Next by Matt Perman

WhatsBestNext

Years ago when I began this blog, I looked around on the internet to see who else was doing anything similar. There were lots of material on productivity, but very little penned from an explicitly Christian perspective. But there was one individual that stood head and shoulders above the rest: Matt Perman.

The combination of his theological insight and practical outlook is unrivaled. He takes the often-thought-of-as-worldly areas of work, leadership, and productivity and approaches them from a gospel-centered and scripture-saturated perspective.

For the last few years, Matt has poured his blood, sweat, and tears (From what he’s said about the writing process, that might not be too much of an exaggeration) into his first book, What’s Best Next: How the Gospel Transforms the Way You Get Things Done. And finally, the book releases today!

I highly recommend that you click on over and purchase it. If you could do so this week, that would be particularly helpful – Matt and his publisher have the hopes of hitting the best-seller list (which is based on sales in this first week).

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Luther, Opposable Thumbs, and the Work/Rest Balance

Opposable Thumbs and the Work Rest Balance

I once read about the concept of an opposable mind. It’s a great way to describe truths which appear to not easily agree.

Think of it like this: Humans have opposable thumbs. Our thumbs apply pressure in one direction and our fingers apply pressure in the other direction – and that’s how we can grab things.

In the same way, sometimes two statements push in opposite directions. But it’s not that they contradict each other. They’re applying pressure so that the truth in the middle can be grasped and truly understood.

Keeping that in mind, here are some great quotes from Martin Luther about the value of rest and work.

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How to Master Goals and Keep Them from Ruining Your Life

master-your-goals

It’s that time again. Time to dial in those goals and aspirations for a new year.

Time to decide where we want to be this time next year.

Time to resolve to do what’s necessary to get there.

But that approach can end up frustrating you, guilt-tripping you, and even wrecking your life.

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Delete Your Facebook App and Take Back Your Productivity

Delete Your Facebook App

The following is a guest post from Grayson Pope.

You know what it’s like. That overwhelming desire to check Facebook. Maybe you got a new message, or maybe someone wrote on your wall.

So, of course, you check it.

But at what cost?

Well, that cost is becoming more and more clear as the numbers develop and our online habits are studied.

In a word, the cost is simple — time. And it may be more time than you think.

That’s why I recently deleted my Facebook app and took back my productivity.
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How to Have an Excellent Day of Rest

We talk a lot in contemporary Christian culture about rest – about taking one day out of seven to cease from our work.

But our focus tends to be on the quantity of our rest time rather than the quality.

We think that we’ll be refreshed just because we don’t go to the office or because we don’t check our email for a 24-hour period.

But excellent leisure is about more than what we cease from. It’s about what we are partaking in. It is a very active process in its own way.

And we limit the enjoyment we have – and the glory that God can receive – when we don’t rest well.

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Motivation Isn’t Always the Answer in Goals

There are lots of right ways to have goals. And lots of wrong ways.

The biggest mistake I see – a mistake I’ve made too many times myself – is to focus too much on the first pillar of goal-setting: motivation.

Let me make this clear: I think that motivation is the most important pillar. The raw emotion and drive is what holds the rest of the system together.

So it makes sense that we focus on motivation. But that can lead to failure.
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Gifts of Time: A Simple (Not Easy) Way to Lead Your Wife

Gifts of Time: A Simple Way to Lead Your Wife

As married men, we hear a lot about leading our families.

It’s a high calling, to be sure. But it’s problematic when we think that a high calling can only be met with grandiose and complicated actions.

For instance, one of the greatest things I’ve done to lead my wife is a simple gift of time.

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