The Rule of Five

8.01.2011

Despite hearing and reading wonderful reviews of James Patterson novels, I had not read anything of his until a couple of weeks ago. I read "Suzanne's Diary to Nicholas" and I enjoyed it. It emotional without being over the top and was certainly not predictable. But above all, something that was mentioned early on in the book, is something I've thought about at least once a day since reading it.

Imagine that in your life day to day, week to week and year to year is all about juggling fives balls. Each of these balls represent something; work, family, friends, health and spirit. At any given point, all of them are in the air and you are responsible for keeping them all going. Now, what if I told you one of these balls is made of rubber, while the rest are glass. Which would you say can bounce back without any harm? And which ones, if dropped, could crack, become scuffed or even shattered?

At this point, I realize that for some that question may be hard to answer. But for me, and I'm assuming for most, the one rubber ball is "work".  Jobs can come and go and as we become older and more aware of what we want to do, what we do for work, changes. You can quit a job, get fired from a job; but when it's all said and done, you can get another job.

But the other four? Not as easily replaceable. And the point of the 5 balls, is balance. Finding the time and effort that needs to be devoted to our heath, friends, family and spiritual life, is not an easy task, but a necessary one. Balance in life requires a lifetime of practice. It's not something easily obtained or something that can be taught. Only learned. The older we become, the more we learn how incredibly valuable those other four balls are and how very much we need them.

Time is something that is constantly running away from us and there is never enough of it. But the good thing about juggling these five things is that we're not graded or judged on how fast we do it. It's about careful we are with each of them. Friends and family become increasingly important the more we realize how fleeting life can be. And our spiritual life? That is an area I feel like I can take 3 steps forward while simultaneously taking 4 in the other direction. I'll learn one thing and improve one area of my relationship with the Lord, while somehow allowing other areas to slip. I'm not sure how I do this, but there it is. Thankfully, I believe that this particular "ball", we aren't truly juggling that one; God's holding that one just as He's holding us. It cannot drop and shatter; but it is just as precious if not more so as the others because without it, what do we have?

I am constantly working on the balance and juggling act that is my life. I've realized this is not something that I can accomplish by myself and it is something that I will never master. There will always be room for improvement. But this analogy really stuck with me and reminds me of how important those glass balls are and that my energy and heart needs to reflect that. And each day provides a lesson to be learned in at least one of those areas. However, more often than not, I'm reminded that each of those glass balls become more fragile as each hour of the day passes.

And I am learning to guard them and what they represent with every fiber of my being.

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2 i love your comments!:

Hannah said...

It is hard to find a balance of everything you have in life. I am constantly working on this in my life. It's crazy that if one thing is even a little off balance, the rest just topples over. I like how you said they were like glass, it makes me feel like it's more precious than anything else. thanks for sharing! : )

Kristyn Ellen said...

Funny you should talk about balance. I have had three completely separate conversations that have all talked about balance. And I didn't initiate the subject! God is trying to tell me something. . .

 
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