Congratulations graduate! All of your hard work has paid off. You’re about to move into the next major phase in your life. In order to be successful in this next phase of your life, it’s important that you remember to stay balanced. Success in life is heavily dependent on the proper balance of one’s spiritual, physical, mental, and social being. Paying too much attention to any of these areas will prove to be just as hazardous as not paying enough attention.
The story is told of a young man, we’ll call him Jarah, who dealt with this very thing. When Jarah was in his sophomore year of college, he began to realize that something was “off”. For some reason, his sophomore year wasn’t as successful as his freshman year. By the end of his freshman year, he had a healthy spiritual life, he had gained twenty pounds of muscle, he had made the dean’s list, and his social life was booming.
His freshman year went so well, that he decided to stack his schedule a little bit his sophomore year. At some point, he stopped managing his time well. Soon, he stopped going to the weight room, in the interest of “saving time”. Shortly after he stopped going to the weight room, his grades began to slip. Once his grades began to slip, he stopped spending as much time going to the worship services on campus.
By the end of his sophomore year, he hadn’t had devotion in months, he’d lost all the weight he’d gained, he was in danger of losing his scholarship, and he was out-of-touch with the people closest to him. Why? He had lost his balance. Once he realized what was happening, he put a conscious effort into making sure he was living a balanced life. Jarah had to be intentional about making sure that every day he spent time with God, with his friends, in the weight room, and in the library.
Jesus’s was the perfect example of a balanced life. The Bible says that he “increased in wisdom and in stature, and in favor with God and man” (Luke 2:52 ESV). Wisdom speaks to his mental being. To be wise, is to have good judgement, and good judgement is one of the most valuable things one could ever possess. Stature speaks to his physical being. The Bible says that “your body is the temple of God” (1 Cor. 6:19 ESV). “So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Cor. 10:31 ESV). One of the first things that people neglect when their schedules become hectic, is exercise, but exercising will actually give your life more balance and make your schedule more bearable.
In favor with God speaks to his spiritual being. The Bible says “and this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent” (John 17:3 ESV). In other words, God wants a relationship with you. He knows everything that one could possibly know about you, but that’s not good enough for him. He wants you to get to know him.
Finally, in favor with man speaks to his social being. In essence, the greatest commandment that God has given us, is to love God and love people. “Anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love” (1 John 4:8 ESV). As children of God, we are to spend our entire lives learning to love. It is important to remember, however, that the people you choose to surround yourself with, will greatly determine the person that you become. On one hand, “a cord of three strands is not easily broken” (Ecc. 4:12 NIV). On the other hand, “bad company ruins good character” (1 Cor. 15:33 NIV).
You may be unsure about many things at this point in your life, and that is fine. Just remember, “trust in the lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths” (Prov. 3:5, 6 ESV).