I’ve been struggling with balance.   It seems that when I focus my attention on one area in my life, other areas get neglected.  Or I get distracted from what matters by something that comes up and takes my attention.

It’s like the canoe trip this weekend.  Instead of paying attention to what we were doing, I was distracted by the scenery around me.  Blue RiverThus, my canoe partner would have to prompt me to switch sides when paddling in order for us to make a straight path through the water vs. zigging and zagging between the shores.  We laughed about my ability to get easily distracted.  I’d be ok for a while and then…squirrel!

I have this same problem with my physical fitness.   When I made it an absolute priority for me to exercise daily, above any other activity, then those around me were neglected.  Even though I was getting stronger, losing weight, and feeling better,  at the same time I was drifting awayfrom friends and family because they did not share the same commitment  towards health.   There is only so much time in a day and if I took that time for me, then I didn’t have time available for others.  A few left turns later, trying to appease and reconnect has left me frustrated.  Other than maintaining an awareness of my diet, I feel like I’m starting all over again with my physical fitness.  Sigh.

It’s also true with my spiritual fitness.  I’ve been drawn to the Word, wanting to study more than anything:  more than work, more than play.  But I can’t abandon my purpose here in this world to seclude myself and study.  (I can hear my mom saying, “Don’t be so heavenly minded that you’re no earthly good.”)  Sigh again.  I need to re-engage and apply what I am learning.   I need to share with others, which means I need to connect with them personally.

Which leads me back to  the initial problem of how to focus on my physical and spiritual needs and still maintain balance in the other important area of my life.  Intuitively I know that simply being aware of the issue is the first step in the solution.  However, I need to come up with an action plan that satisfies all the needs without alienating those around me.  So to that end, I am going to literally calendar my time.  I’m going to set appointments/blocks of time for study, for fitness, and for friends.  Also, I will weed out the non-essential  obligations and cut back on time-fillers so that I can give more (quality and time) to the things that really matter in life.

#TodayIChoose to re-evaluate and restart my journey.


Laura Transparent convertedMarked.  By God and by a tattoo artist.

This design went from a sketch to ink in a matter of days.   It is both a reminder for me as well as an opportunity to share.  This art merely puts into ink what has been branded in my heart.  It symbolizes:

{the cross inside the heart}  Jesus,  who lives beyond the cross,  lives in my heart.  

{the heart surrounding the cross}    I am to take up my cross daily (based on Luke 9:23), but no matter the burden I bear, it is small compared to His great love for me. 

{the feather}  He shelters me in his wings (based on Psalm 91:4); a single feather from those mighty wings protects me and stands guard on my heart. 

I have hope, because of my faith, borne from love.

Friendship tested

“Friendships are often tested by separation and silence; you are divided by physical distance or you are unable to talk.”  ~Day 14 The Purpose Driven Life​

Patoka 11 iPhone
Patoka 11 iPhone

The test of a true friendship is one that can survive the silences.  It allows the time and space needed for whatever the reason.  It waits patiently for the reconnect, without doubting the sincerity or motives of the other.  And while this is applicable to relationships here on this earth, it is also true of my relationship with God. There are times when there is a chasm of silence between us, not because of anything I did wrong, but as a way to mature my faith. It’s easy to believe when there’s joyful noise going on. But even in the silence, I still believe.