Our Newlywed Experience

Within the Body of Christ


Daily receiving life and grace from His constant hand:

"I said to the Lord, 'Thou art my Lord;

I have no good besides Thee.'" Ps 16:2


Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Of Balance and Boxes

I really need to be studying at the moment, need to be.

There’s just Someone that I need even more for a while, so I told studying “not now” for a moment. 
One of my girlfriends shared an analogy that Priscilla Shrier had learned from a wise women of God (she didn’t say who, but because she’s British and using analogies- I think it’s Jill Briscoe)…
It was the lesson of “balance and the boxes.” I think perhaps most of us have an incorrect view of balance. If our priorities were “boxes” and our energy was “liquid”- balance to us would mean all those countless boxes are even and full of the “liquid” of our time and energy.
Yet when our lives look like that (or should I say, when we attempt to make our lives look like that) the result is a nasty, frazzled, haggard MESS.
But true balance, as the lady explained, lies in being able to GUILTLESSLY:
leave some boxes less-than-full…
permanently/temporarily empty some…
while bringing some boxes into the foreground…
and pushing others into the background…
knowing that those boxes brought forward and filled to different degrees are done so based on biblical priorities (and conviction and guidance through the Spirit), and they are the ones that truly need that moment’s or that season’s attention.
Guiltlessly putting things aside. I chose to do that this morning (though I confess it was difficult to do at first!)
I am in so much need of His Spirit as I try to prioritize and plan this week as FINALS begin (today at 11:30- pray for me!!) Here is an excerpt from the book Radical by David Platt that I read earlier this morning:

“The Holy Spirit is the Comforter, the Helper, the Guide, the VERY PRESENCE OF GOD living in you. This is the great promise of God in PRAYER... He delights in giving us HIMSELF.”

Last Friday we held Fellowship of Christian Physician Assistant’s at our home. I was excited to share truths from the Word as well as the book Radical with everyone before finals began.
The theme of the book is that of taking back our faith from the American Dream. The American Dream being, as penned by James Truslow Adams in 1931:
 “a dream…in which each man and each woman shall be able to attain to the fullest stature of which they are innately capable and be recognized by others for what they are.”
Of course hard work, high goals, and freedom to do so are beautiful things- BUT, as Platt describes, there is a “dangerous assumption” and a “deadly goal” we find in the American Dream if we are not cautious.
The “dangerous assumption” is that our greatest ability is our own self. The Word of God stands in direct contrast to this concept. “I said to the LORD, ‘You are my Lord; I have no good besides You.’” Psalm 16:2  “God confronts us with our utter inability to do anything of value apart from Him.”
The “fatal goal” of the American dream is that “we make much of ourselves.” When we live by our might alone, we attribute what is accomplished to our own glory. And here the American Dream and the gospel stand directly opposed to the other: “the goal of the American Dream is to make much of us, the goal of the gospel is to make much of God.”
“He must increase, but I must decrease.” John 3:30
“In direct contraindication to the American Dream, God actually delights in exalting our inability. He intentionally puts people in situations where they come face to face with their need for Him. In the process He powerfully demonstrates His ability to provide everything His people need in ways they could never have mustered up or imagined. And in the end, He makes much of His own name.”  Praise God.
And here’s where we can stop and apply this concept to our lives.
“CEASE STRIVING, and know that I am God…”  Psalm 46:10
We blatantly oppose the American Dream when we STOP and plunge into the Presence of the Lord God through His Word and approaching Him in prayer.
Stop. STOP. And be with Him.
Though unfortunately we QUICKLY ran out of time on Friday, our activity was to make Scripture journals that we could keep with us throughout the day that contained Scripture we were memorizing (as mentioned in this post). We’ll just have to finish this week ;)
I was happy, however, that everyone left armed with a pile of Scripture, also from a previous post. Through Scripture and prayer we can KNOW the very heart of God and be in His very presence.

It is the only way we can live.
“I run in the path of your commands, for you have set my heart free.” Psalm 119:32
Blessings- Katie