the balancing act

A couple years ago I was having a conversation with a friend and that conversation FREQUENTLY comes to mind. We talked about the difficulty of finding balance and maintaining it, but before I go any further I want to tell you a different story. So as I’m sure you’re well aware, we are living in a time of isolation and distance. Because of this, I have been working from home for about two and a half months. Something I have found in working from home is how much I neglect to eat… So I work in marketing and I do a lot of creative projects (video editing, making social media content, etc.) and I am a bit of a perfectionist and a people pleaser. So naturally, when I am in the zone and in the middle of a project, I forget to take a break and eat lunch. This is great for my work, because I make sure I am doing a good job, but like I said, I neglect to eat, and ultimately I fail to take care of myself.

Going back to my first thought, maintaining balance is incredibly difficult. I’m sure you have heard the saying “You are never going to please everyone.” I think there is truth in that, so let’s pick that phrase apart. It is true, you will never satisfy, fully, the needs and wants of everyone you encounter. However, I do think you can better achieve it, with the right mentality. By that I mean simply, if you tell yourself you can’t, it will be much harder to do so. In John chapter 14, Jesus says, “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.” Later in John, Jesus says His greatest command is to love. So if we think we have to give every human what they want, it will be a miserable endeavor. But, if we aim to give every human their basic need, we will be much more joyful and successful. That basic need being, love.

Our top priority should be our relationship with the Lord. Stemming from that, getting to Heaven, and next loving others and bringing them to Heaven. I think the cause of most, if not all troubles, is either 1. A lack of clarity, or, 2. A lack of trust. I mean, look at the first sin, Adam didn’t fully trust in God’s goodness, resulting in the fall in the garden. I am not saying, “Well if you just tell yourself you can do it, you will succeed”… no. I think that mindset can be even more detrimental because it is very self reliant, when really, we should be reliant on God and His Grace. Apart from Him, we can do nothing. We NEED Him.

I have come to realize that the reason maintaining balance is such a difficult thing is because I often put the focus and expectation on myself. Thinking I have to please everyone, or, I have to be what everyone wants me to be. That is just not true. Saint Catherine of Sienna says, “Be who God created you to be and you will set this world ablaze.”  Don’t allow others to rob you of your identity as God’s beloved son or daughter, don’t allow others to steal your joy or your peace. Humans cannot control that which has been given by God. Maintaining balance can only be achieved by complete surrender and dependence on Him, remember this, or it will be a miserable endeavor marked by failure to satisfy the wants of the world. 

You are loved, You are seen and You are wanted by a good Father.

Pax et caritas,

Jeremy Bodenschatz

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