A balanced life.
30 I have chosen the way of faithfulness;
I have set my heart on your laws. (NIV)
Shalom peace is born from God’s plan for a balanced life. The success promised by the enemy leads to great success in one area or the other, but to the detriment of another. The imbalance will manifest in a successful career joined to a broken marriage, a fun-filled life joined to financial instability, and fame joined to depression.
God’s desire for us is abundant life here and now. His gifts are beautiful, and He intends for us to enjoy them. Music, art, friendship, laughter, food, drink, sex, success, and adventure. Yet, if any of these imbalances another, life begins to spiral out of control. God wants us to enjoy food without gluttony, sex within marriage, adventure with wisdom, music that uplifts, success with prudence, and art that inspires.
Our passage today is about choosing to set our hearts on the laws of God. The word ‘set’ comes from an original word meaning ‘to counterbalance.’ When we follow God’s law, we find ourselves living a full life, enjoying the beauty of a life given to us for enjoyment. However, the laws of God keep us within a framework that achieves a balanced life.
According to The Balanced CEO, the eight pillars of a balanced life are spiritual, emotional, mental, physical, social, environmental, financial, and occupational. This is a great list. There are many secular sources teaching balance through the pursuit of desire. But without the Spirit, we are powerless to restrain human desire. Without this restraint, we are soon out of balance. The law of God calls us first to a spiritual communion essential to balance every other area.
The world would frame God’s law as restrictive. It is restrictive, but the nature of the restriction work to maintain balance and result in peace. The laws of God warn against laziness but also mandate a regular practice of rest. God has endowed us with the ability to produce wealth but guards this with a command to extreme generosity. The Song of Solomon in Scripture touts the joy of sex but adultery is a punishable offense. Jesus said He came for us to have life to the full, but we are commanded to get wisdom even if it costs us all we have. The law of God at its foundation counterbalances the gifts of God to keep our life balanced.
Prayer: Lord, let me follow You that I might enjoy all You desire for me without losing the balance that brings peace. Amen.