Today I am blessed to share with you an encouraging guest post today, from my friend Kelly. When I put out a call for guest posts, Kelly graciously stepped forward to share her heart here and I am so thankful she did. I pray you are as blessed by her words as I am.
As spring flourishes with new life, flowers, and promises of warm sunshine I find myself lifting my face heavenward in gratitude. Part of me wonders why all seasons can’t be as beautiful.
Why can’t the grass stay so green, highlighting rosebuds during summer? Why are the days of summer too hot and dry to maintain the loveliness of the delicate blossoms? Why can’t the vibrant colors of fall shine through the winter? Instead, daylight is scarce with bitter wind biting.
It’s the desolate seasons where my questions grow and my desire for the precious balance of beauty and comfort in seasons such as spring and autumn becomes strongest. I struggle to find balance in all seasons.
Balance has been a phenomenon I’ve longed to achieve for as long as I can remember, a word that frequents my lips.
“Find a balance when choosing a routine.”
“Don’t spend too much time focused on one person or thing; keep a balanced view.”
“Put aside the notion that you are spending too much time cleaning or coddling your children by neglecting your duties. Find a balance and live at peace.”
Yet I never seem to arrive at that peaceful state of balance, no matter how much I try. Then I beat myself up when I can’t maintain balance in my life. I pine away for perfection, yet it seems to be unattainable as the glaring heat of summer blinds my common sense.
So I begin making to-do lists and read of strategies to maintain an organized life, and as winter’s wind howls mockingly at my vain attempts to get this thing called a balanced life in working order, I begin longing for the perfection of spring.
Thankfully, with God’s gift of an early spring this year, He also blessed me with a fresh perspective. Each warm winter day that seemed more like April than January, I soaked up with all of the joy I could muster. I accomplished what was necessary with a promise that the sunshine would eagerly greet me when I was free to take some time to bask in it, and then I let go of my lists and lived in the sweetness of the day. I lived to find the beauty in each part of the day because I knew I wasn’t promised a day such as this one tomorrow. And when that wintery weather returned the next day, I was at peace because I knew that I needed to accomplish more obligations than I had the day before.
At last I have reached an answer to my years of searching for what a balanced life should be. It’s not one season that brings balance. It’s all of the seasons working together. The earth needs various seasons to maintain quality life just as I do. The roses could not bloom if they did not have a winter in which they could rest. The gardens planted in spring must grow through summer to produce their fruit.
Why not accept this as truth in my life? I need all seasons to live a truly balanced life. Times of growth, times of maintaining, times of harvesting, and times to remain dormant – they all work together to create a balance.
As I searched in vain to find the perfect method of always living in the spring-like season, I was missing out. I couldn’t see those days where I felt like I accomplished nothing as part of the package of balance. Now I can view them for what they are – a gift from God where I can take time to breathe and soak in the details that harvest season doesn’t have time to notice. I can be thankful for the busy times because I know my hard work will allow a season of adequate rest in the future.
How about you? Have you struggled with living a balanced life? What helps you find peace in accomplishing what is necessary for each season?
Kelly is a high school teacher turned stay-at-home mom to an adventurous little boy and wife to a God-fearing, life-loving husband. You can join her at her blog, Exceptionally Average, where she encourage other women to cast off their tendencies to dwell in mediocrity or isolate themselves with exceptional circumstances. Instead, she seeks to build community with women like her that strive to be exceptionally average on the journey – a journey to find joy in the simple, balance in life’s craziness, and urgency to live out God’s call for her life.