Where do you find the personal balance in your life, do you have a set of daily chores that when repeated give you comfort, are you finding solace in your family and friends, spending much time in conversations, is it that daily drive to and from work, where do you go to get rebalanced, as it were, to bring everything back into focus.
As believers, we can find little solace in the world, wherever we look, there seems to be turmoil and strife, and finding a place to “get away from it all” is becoming more and more difficult. Granted, we could turn off the television, set our cell phones down and disconnect the internet, but I am going to presume that few if any of you are prepared to go quite that far. And to tell you the truth, which I always strive to do, I do not think that we should. There is a fine line, a balancing point, that every believer in Christ must seek to achieve, one of living in the world, but not living for it, we should stay informed, but not consumed with the path that this world is on.
The lost are encapsulated by this world, their only hope of escape is salvation through Jesus Christ, one that we should pray daily that they will find, but we have been chosen for different path. “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” (Rom. 12:2) We are to find within ourselves by the power of the Holy Spirit the ability to live on this earth, but not to be a part of it, not to be conformed to its ways. Conformed means to “fit in” or “to follow,” and while I know that it is difficult not to do so, so does our Lord, and if you are obeying this commandment, so do you. How many times have you read the news, seen on your cell phone, or watched in any other form the news of the world today, it can be very difficult to find anything that says everything will be all right, strife and envy are the way of the world.
We as believers are the only ones on the planet that have direct access to God through Jesus christ our Lord, “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;” (1st Tim. 2:5) and through our mediator we can express all our hopes, desires and fears, we can speak to our Lord any time we so desire, and we know that what we say to Him is in the utmost confidentiality. This my friends, is where we are to go to find our balancing point, when the world tries to crash down upon us, when the cares that it tries to impress upon us seem to overwhelm us, we have a Father in heaven who is always available. It does not matter where you are, the position you are in physically, or even the time of day, He is available, but there is a time and place when we should seek complete solitude with Him.
“But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.” (Matt. 6:6) We should all have a place where we can go to be alone with the Lord, a place where we can be assured of no distractions, no cell phone, no people, nothing but the quite solitude that interprets this “enter into thy closet” statement correctly. You cannot have any sense of a quite time with Christ stuck in a traffic jam, or while your cell phone is still turned on, these will not allow you to “Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.” (Psalm 46:10) As I am sure that you can tell, this closet, this quite place must be a place of our own predetermined decision, it cannot be some haphazard idea that just pops into our head, it is a time and a place set apart to be close to the Lord, with absolutely no interruptions.
This is a conscience decision that we must make, it cannot be planned and then not carried out, and without this time alone with the Lord, you will never know the balanced life, the world will pull at you, and it will pull hard. Each of us spends at least some time in prayer, or at least I would hope we do, and not just the quick “Thank you” at dinner time, not just in the building on Sunday morning, but in those times when we are busy with the cares of the world, when we are driving down the road, whenever and wherever. But this my friends is not the closet that our Lord was speaking of, that place is not even a closet, as I am sure you were well aware of, it is a place that you have set aside just for you and Christ, just for the two of you. How long you are there is of course your own choice, as is most things that we are asked to do by the Lord, even His commandments are not necessary for us to follow, that is if you don’t care to be obedient.
This place is a separate place, and for some who cannot make it to the same location each time, it is still a place that you have determined will be the spot that you will make available only to you and the Lord. The key to your closet is the no interruptions clause, if you will, and this to must be something that you have predetermined will not happen, without taking this factor into account, I can just about guarantee that you will indeed be interrupted, for our adversary is well aware of what the obedient servants of Christ are doing, and every opportunity he has to disrupt that desire to serve he will take.
I can suggest one other thing here that will help with your balance, the heart of a servant’s desire to please the Lord, and it also is only going to be accomplished by your own efforts. Use great caution when interpreting the information from the world that you allow to enter into your mind. Spiritual discernment is a great gift form the Lord, and when it comes to the things that the world seems to believe is important, without this discernment, you may be led astray. “For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.” (1st Cor. 1:19) This worlds wisdom will throw anybody off balance, but especially those whose faith is genuine, but not yet mature, for we can sometimes be unable to tell the truth from the lie of the world. What the world says we are to be concerned with is of no concern to our lord, and so it should not be to us either, but of course, wise discernment must always be used.
The path that man believes to be correct is the path of death, (Prov. 14:12) and if we are not carefully in prayer at all times, we can be easily deceived. Without that time alone with the Lord, we will find ourselves drawn more and more into what the world believes is important, and further away from where we should be, trusting in Him in all things, both spiritual and materialistically. The balancing point my brothers and sisters is never on an even keel with the follower of Christ, it is always tipped towards the Lord, and when we spend serious quite time with Him alone, trusting in His mercy and grace to lead us, it will always stay that way.