Struggling with work/life balance, stress and burnout? Want some insight on how to avoid these? Well, ponder on the concluding part of my simple yet powerful biblical strategies to promote abundant living.
Manage Your Life Well – Believe it or not, God has made you the manager of your life. So I encourage you to manage it more effectively. Whilst I appreciate this can be a challenge in our world of endless to-do lists, do it anyway! To manage your life better, you will need to reprioritise your life. Prayerfully consider what is really important and what isn't because you can't do everything (contrary to what you may believe). Ask God to make you wise in your decisions. As a result, you may need to let go of some or all of your activities. You may also need to learn the art of saying 'no'. Now, this tends to be a challenge for some of us who feel we ought to be selfless as Christians. But I don't believe God wants us to be under constant burden or pressure – feeling obligated to always say 'yes'. God does want us to be a blessing to others but not at a cost that stands to jeopardise our well being. So, if you struggle with saying 'no', hold off making a decision until you have had time to prayerfully consider what God might want you to do. This way, you start making Godly decisions.
Take Time Out For Your Life – Have you noticed that Jesus often retreated from the crowds? I believe He was modelling how we ought to live our lives. Jesus wisely knew when to pull away after a busy period. Yet, many of us struggle to do this in our busy world. And if we do, we may find ourselves feeling guilty because there is plenty to be done. But take a moment to consider the benefits of taking time out. You get an uninterrupted opportunity to pray, rest, reflect, refocus, hear from God, be restored, refreshed and much more. And by the way, your time out does not have to be a lengthy affair. You would be amazed what a few hours or days could make when you lay aside the weight of your normal activities. So are you due some 'Me Time'? Why not plan ahead and block out some hours or days in your schedule? Trust me, the world will not stop spinning and it will survive without you.
Get The Support You Need – Are you trying to fulfil a huge calling/task by yourself? Have you considered getting help or implementing a support mechanism for yourself? I believe this becomes increasingly important the greater the responsibility you carry. Why? Because when adequate support is lacking, there is usually trouble ahead! People who start off on a high, sooner or later, find themselves depleted of every kind of resource (physical, spiritual, financial, etc). Yet, glancing through the Bible, you will notice that many great leaders had support of some kind. For example, Jesus had his disciples; David had his mighty men of valour, etc. Notice that the 'supporters' were there to help the their leader in more ways than one. Now, you might be thinking, "I don't have a ministry or huge responsibility", but you can still surround yourself with godly people who can be of support to you on this journey called life.
Enjoy Your God-Given Sabbath Rest – Have you considered the fact that even God rested on the Sabbath day? Moreover, He commanded His people to do the same. Yet, many of us use this day to catch up on unfinished tasks. I know I am guilty of this. The problem that arises is that we don't get the chance to take our hands off the steering wheel of life. We continue at full speed with blurred lines between work, rest and play. So, you may not see the harm in catching up with your emails, work-related tasks, house chores, grocery shopping, etc but that is the mindset of the secular world, not God. It's not that He is old fashioned or wants to cramp our style. Rather, He has given us a formula to aid us in living an abundant, healthy and balanced life. So choose to enjoy your God-given day of rest regardless of the pressures around you.
In closing, I encourage you to prayerfully reflect on your life. Consider whether you are living the abundant life God promised you and I. And if there are changes to be made, ask God to help you take that bold step of faith so you can enjoy life according to His standards and not that of the worlds.