Originally published on May 7, 2020
For the time being, I want to find balance. Thanks to social media, I see my Martha-friends cleaning out closets, garages, and attics. They’re managing their homes and children and schools like military reform camps. I see my Martha Stewart-friends crafting with their children and sewing masks. They are playing games and organizing nature scavenger hunts. They’re looking for any opportunity for distraction and to keep their little ones occupied. My Mary-friends are posting pictures of their devotion books and early-morning times with God. These are the same friends who have to ask what day it is. It’s no surprise, though, regardless of their tendencies, they are all posting pictures of their food. It could be a protein shake for the diet-conscious or make-me-drool pots of deliciousness.
Again, where’s the balance? I don’t like social distancing. There are things that I miss. Mostly, I miss my RDA of Sunday hugs and hellos. I miss being greeted by friendly faces at the door. On the lighter side, I haven’t been late for church in a month, but my family and I also haven’t acknowledged and shown the reverence toward worship that we know it deserves.
I’m pretty good at just accepting the way things are and making the most of them. I’ve done a little Martha, reorganizing the office, wrapping up taxes, making lists of things to do. Post-it notes make colorful reminders. Martha Stewart shows up plenty. My Pinterest likes have doubled, and I’m finishing projects. Jesus’s dear friend, Mary, does the most to feed my heart. She’s a student; she’s a learner. She desperately wants to know her savior. Thankfully, the Lord’s spirit gives me a contented heart. Contentment means to be satisfied or pleased. No matter what I’m doing, I know God is there with me. His spirit is guiding and directing my heart to learn, to work, to be creative, to find a balance.
I like the ESV reading of Proverbs 13:4 because it says the soul. The soul of the sluggard craves and gets nothing, while the soul of the diligent is richly supplied.
I don’t want this time to be a waste. I believe that times prepare and equip us for later times. I want to be ready for whatever comes next, making the most of the time I have. Discontentment may lead us down dark paths away from God. Lamenting or envying another time only wastes the present. When we are missing, and we are longing, we are not allowing our souls to be diligent… therefore we are not supplied.
Depending on the translation, Proverbs 14:30 states, A heart of peace (or a tranquil heart) gives life to the body, but envy makes the bones rot.
I don’t want my longing and wishing to rot away the opportunity to be more diligent toward my relationships. I want a peaceful heart to give life to the body: my body and the body of Christ. I don’t want my time to be wasted being a sluggard.
Balance is afforded in the scriptures; Proverbs and Ecclesiastes are riddled with it.
Ecclesiastes 3:1–13 A Time for Everything
For everything, there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven.
A time to be born and a time to die. A time to plant and a time to harvest.
A time to kill and a time to heal. A time to tear down and a time to build up.
A time to cry and a time to laugh. A time to grieve and a time to dance.
A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones. A time to embrace and a time to turn away.
A time to search and a time to quit searching. A time to keep and a time to throw away.
A time to tear and a time to mend. A time to be quiet and a time to speak.
A time to love and a time to hate. A time for war and a time for peace.
What do people really get for all their hard work? I have seen the burden God has placed on us all. Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end. So I concluded there is nothing better than to be happy and enjoy ourselves as long as we can. And people should eat and drink and enjoy the fruits of their labor, for these are gifts from God. (This is taken most literally by us Southerners.)
Stay at home when you can… Wash your hands… Find your balance in the Lord.