A Simple Life, a Childlike Faith

A Simple Life, a Childlike Faith


Tension versus flexibility

posted by Linda G. Howard

We all live with tensions in our lives.  There is the importance of play versus work; work versus family and friends.  We wrestle with maintaining a spiritual connection with the Lord while still being authentic people.  Eating healthy diets balanced with comfort foods that may soothe your feelings during stress.  There is the need for exercise coupled with the body recouping energy gained through rest, sleep and relaxation.  If we are healthy in body, mind and spirit, we have learned to balance each of the tensions in our lives which brings a harmonious hum to each day.

Tension versus Flexibility

Within every ministry there are also tensions.  If you are associated with a non-disabled group of people, there is usually the tension between studying to teach and preach three to five messages a week and counseling and visitation.  If you are a youth pastor, there will be the tension between study and planning versus counseling and interacting in playful ministry with the youth under your care.  If you are a hospital chaplain, there is the tension between paperwork and praying with and for people who are in pain. 

For people who work with Special Gathering, we actually face all of these ministry tensions.  As a ministry within the disability community, our goal is to disciple and evangelize the mentally challenged community. In addition, there is the added and constant tension between advocacy, paperwork, building local church interaction and all the other concerns in our ministry bag. 

Because our members are heavily invested within the governmental system for their support, we believe that advocacy is an important part of what we do and our work-week reflects that. Nevertheless, there is a struggle to bring balance, coupled with order.  As states go bankrupt  and services are cut, we think we must inform and advise.  However, should that take the place of daily devotion?  Maybe and maybe not.  We actually would like to strike a balance. 

We can’t lose our connection with our real Provider and Friend, the Lord Jesus.  This is a time for prayer for and a time for each of us to work for an equitable balance within state budgets.  The only thing which will bring equity will be God’s hand of balance and love.  We access that grace through His mercy and by our prayers.

What are the tensions you are facing in your life?  What brings tension and flexibility to your life?



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