2000-02-09 - The Christian Life - Balance
Romans 3:23 (NLT) For all have sinned; all fall short of Gods glorious standard.
My fourteen-year-old daughter has been competing in gymnastics for the past 6 years and well she is quite good. Two years ago she won the State Championship and last year placed in the top five. Her season has just begun for this year. With two meets behind her, Morgan has come in second place in the all-around competition at both meets. The girls compete in four different events, floor exercise, balance beam, vault and uneven bars. Medals are given for the top four or five scores in each event. Trophies are awarded for the top three total scores in all four events. This past Saturday as the scores were being announced, something really struck me about my daughter. Of course I am proud of her, but something more profound struck me about her skills. She is a very well-balanced gymnast. Some girls score very high on one event, then much lower in their other three events. In the total point or all-around competition these girls that only score high in one event typically will not place in the top five. Morgan is consistent and balanced. She may place 3rd, 4th or even 5th in two events, and first or second in the other two. Over the years, when the total combined scores have been announced, she has consistently been in the top three. She does not have to be perfect in each event to place first or second; she just needs to be consistent and balanced.
How balanced is your Christian life? I bet most of you are like me, I may score high in Bible study or prayer time, but lack quiet time or fellowship and serving time. How consistent is your walk with Christ? Does it fluctuate from day to day, week to week or moment by moment? Before I matured more as a Christian, I was all over the board. Sometimes I would bury myself in deep Bible study, but have a terrible prayer life. Sometimes my devotion to serving and fellowshipping with other Christians would come to a standstill. I could and would rationalize away my weak spots. I still do this, I may say to myself, "gee, you wrote two devotionals this week, attended two Bible studies and finished reading a Christian book, just sleep in on Sunday."
My roller-coaster rides of Christian living used to really get me down. Oh I still ride a roller coaster, but it usually takes me higher and it doesn't dip as lowly as before. If you have read my writings for awhile you know one of my mottos is, progression, not perfection. The Christian life is not a life of being perfect, but rather progression toward being more like Christ. It hit me recently that the Christian life is not difficult; it is impossible. If it is possible for me to live a perfect life, then I do not need a Savior. As our familiar verse says today, we all fall short of the glory of God. Just as I am proud of my daughter being so well-rounded and balanced, God must be very proud of us when we try to live a balanced and consistent Christian life. A consistent life is not bouncing from one religious fad to another. A balanced life is not flaming out or burning out on one aspect of your walk with Christ. It is a life of realizing that being exactly like Christ is impossible on this side of eternity. It is life of realizing first and foremost that I need a Savior, because without Him, I am nothing. Without Him, I lose out on an eternity in Heaven. And that would be the biggest loss ever.
Lord, thank You for providing us a way to make it to Heaven. Thank You for sending Your Son to set an example for us. He showed us a life of balance and consistency. Help us to be more like Him. Mostly we thank You for sacrificing Him for our imperfect selves. In Christs name, Amen.