Friday, April 3, 2020

Devotionals for the Heart: Balance

Balancing life with God
A devotional by Mirachelle Canada

“For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known. So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” – 1 Corinthians 13:12-13 (ESV)

I am blessed to be close to my sister. Most people are surprised we are six years apart. In our younger days, we were compared like twins. That comparison caused me to want to be more like her and as I grew older, I observed and analyzed things she was doing – some I agreed with, others I did not. Later, I realized that because of how much I had been concerned for her choices, I had developed some internal (unspoken) criticisms against her that had taken root as a judgement in my heart.

We are still similar in looks, but individually we both developed through very different approaches to life. My sister is laid-back and enjoys pleasing others. I am independent and carefree. I like writing, and she likes crafting. We look like the same flower, but it felt like we’d grown up in two different gardens.

How often do you unintentionally criticize those you love in your heart? It’s easy for thought or observation about someone to become a judgment root. It can sprout in a moment of disagreement or anger, or from a verbal and emotional comparison. As I watched my sister face life’s difficulties, I compared her reactions and choices to my own; to the way I would have done it, and more honestly, to the way I thought she should have done it.

It wasn’t until after I experienced the biggest event of my sister’s life – her wedding day – that God tugged on my unexposed judgment root. Both of us were older than we expected, and I had prayed a long time for this gift of happiness for her. At the time of her marriage, everything was going great in my life, but very shortly after everything fell apart. My career tanked, and my finances plummeted. I had to move back home, and I grieved my losses. I also felt left behind, primarily because of my sister’s newfound happiness. It wasn’t at all how I had imagined my life to become.

God spoke to my heart with this thought, “What did you expect?”

God showed me my sister on a tightrope. She was wobbling, as we all do at the beginning. I wanted to help her find balance, but I watched as Jesus Christ gave her His tools instead: an umbrella, with which she moved farther along, then a tricycle and she rode further still. Lastly, He placed a long balance pole in her hands, and she made it to Him waiting on the other side. I immediately knew what each tool represented from 1 Corinthians 13:13 (ESV), “So now faith, hope, and love abide...” He gave her an umbrella (faith), a tricycle (hope) and a balancing pole (love). She was welcomed at the end into His open arms because “the greatest of these is love.”

He showed me my tightrope, cluttered with items I had placed before me and those I had used behind, barely staying balanced on the line. They were all the choices, excuses, and deflections I had used to get this far on my own. Of course, God had walked with me, but I had chosen my own tools to do things my way, the way I thought others should. Had it been up to me to guide my sister, I might have cluttered her lifeline like my own.

I asked God to forgive me for not making Him the complete Lord of my life (and not trusting Him with the lives of others). As He removed my judgment root, everything fell off my tightrope, and instead of waiting on the other side for me to cross, He zipped down the line to stand before me so nothing else was in view. He offered me His hand. As I took it, He turned and raised a lantern to light a pathway instead, and my spirit rejoiced at the promise that filled my heart, “Your word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path” (Psalm 119:105 ESV). Yes, God, not my way, but yours alone. There is no greater balance in life.

Do you need such balance in your life today too? Is there a stumbling root in your heart that God can remove? Pray and seek Him. He’s waiting at the other end of your tightrope to make your way clear and straight into His arms of love.

Author Bio:
Mirachelle Canada is a writer, playwright, screenwriter, and theatre director/producer from Northern Virginia, where she teaches television production at her high school alma mater. 

She earned her Master of Fine Arts in Script & Screenwriting from Regent University and is an alumnus of Act One: Hollywood Film & Television Writing Program.

Mirachelle is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, American Fiction Writers Virginia Chapter, The Jerry Jenkins Writers Guild, and Your Novel Blueprint.

She is currently working on her first historical fiction novel set during WWII.

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