Archive - Balanced Life

God and Rest: Right and Wrong Views on Leisure – Episode 5

God and rest

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Duration: 15:01

Many Christians have an incorrect view of rest. It’s evident from blogs to books to day-to-day conversations.

Our society has influenced how we think about rest and leisure, and we need to reclaim a truly biblical perspective on these issues.

Once we grasp a correct understanding of rest, then we’ll be freed to make some practical changes to how we engage in rest and leisure in our daily lives.

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Volunteering: God Loves a Cheerful Giver of Time

Cheerful GiverMy wife and I have been crunching a lot of numbers on our budget lately, trying to set aside a good pad of savings.

One major expenditure was the three-year commitment we made to give our church’s building fund. The last year of our commitment is 2012, and it was relieving when I considered that chunk of money could be funneled into savings for 2013 and beyond.

But then a wave of disgust hit me. How selfish and materialistic am I when I’m eager for our commitment to end so that I can spend the money on myself? In that moment, I was anything but a cheerful giver.

And as I considered my attitude, I thought about how we sometimes feel the same about time. Is giving of our time a cheerful pleasure – or do we look at it as a burden?
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Christian Service: How to Avoid the Biggest Source of Failure

Christian Service Failure

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a pastor, teacher, parent, lay person, minister, or a volunteer. If you’re a faithful Christian trying to live out God’s call on your life, there’s a very real danger lurking and ready to destroy your Christian service.

It’s not a lack of experience. It’s not adultery. It’s not greed. It’s not anger and hatred. Or rather, it doesn’t start there.

Failure in Christian service – from mere ineffectiveness to horrid disqualifying sins – begins much more subtly. A simple failure to manage time is often the culprit that starts the ministry-ruining ball rolling.

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Workaholic Symptoms: Do You “Sacrifice” for Your Family?

Workaholic Symptoms

More than once, I’ve heard professionals talk about the sacrifices that they’ve made for their family.

But those sacrifices have a trend to them.

The sacrifice wasn’t taking lower pay in order to be at home. It wasn’t turning down that prestigious project in order to attend better to family.

It always seems to be the reverse: workaholics claim that their extra work at the office is the sacrifice. A sacrifice they’re making for their family.

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How to Feel Less Busy in Three Seconds

Feel Less Busy

You might laugh when I tell you how to feel less busy. You might immediately stop reading this post.

But maybe there’s a chance you’ll agree.

Either way, I hope this at least gets you thinking.

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Before You Stress about Invasions of Your Personal Time

Lock to Gate

A comedy skit I remember from a long time ago opened up by showing a man walking out his front door. He goes to lock the gate to the fence surrounding his yard.

Apparently, he’s very serious about no one entering his yard, because the gate is covered with multiple locks. He spends about 30 seconds latching deadbolts, turning keys, and securing padlocked chains.

As he walks away, the camera reveals that, despite his zealous concern for locking his gate, the fence to his yard is only about 2 feet high with huge gaps in it.

It made me laugh.

But how many of us do the same with our time? And how does that affect our relationships?

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Busy and Lazy at the Same Time

Although we don’t like the sensation of being busy, we tend to view our busyness as a virtue. We think of constant activity as the hallmark of someone who is productive.

But that’s a huge misconception. Busyness can actually be a symptom of laziness, ineffectiveness, and procrastination. In fact, most of the time I’m busy – it’s precisely because I’m being lazy.
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Do You Have a Time Management Problem or a Love Problem?

I heard something insightful today: It’s hard to really serve that which we don’t love.

You can tough it out and serve for a season even if you don’t love. You can be nice and act the part in public if you don’t love.

But fully serving someone is impossible if you don’t love them. Serving them with your actions, with your words, with your time – your success is dependent on how much you love.
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Five Ways Busy Parents Can Find Balance

For a lot of parents, back-to-school season means back to being stressed.

There’s homework, soccer practice, piano lessons, church activities, birthday parties for friends – and that’s just Monday.

We want to be good parents. We want to give our children opportunities. But we also want to take care of our health, get adequate rest, have personal devotionals, maintain a loving marriage, and battle that growing mountain of dirty dishes.

How do we balance it all? How can we be good, God-honoring parents, while still being obedient in other areas of our life? How do we make practical and spiritual sense of all of this?

That’s the intro for my guest post today at Pop Parables, the blog of Keri Welch. She uses metaphors and parables to make thought-provoking points about faith and the Christian life.

Thanks to Keri for allowing me this opportunity, and I hope you all can benefit from the post. Click here to check it out.

Vocation: How God Prepared David to Battle Goliath

In a previous post, I talked about how we are called to pursue excellence in all the stewardships that God has given us. We tend to neglect the smaller areas that we feel aren’t as glamorous – but if we aren’t faithful in those “small” tasks, how can we ask for God’s blessings in other areas of our life?

I want to continue that thought today by taking another look at one of the most well-known biblical stories. God worked through seemingly insignificant responsibilities to prepare David for greater things.
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