Balancing Family, Work, and Spirituality

Yesterday I had the assignment to speak about Balancing Family, Work And Spirituality to the Parents and Grandparents of Students who attend our Crescent City Christian School in Metairie. At Crescent City Christian we have an excellent faculty, and we offer to our students a good education, a positive social atmosphere and a number of extracurricular sports and activities; all in the context of a strong Christian environment.

In my presentation about Balancing Family, Work And Spirituality, I acknowledged that I haven’t always been good with knowing how to do that. One reason I haven’t always been good with balancing family, work and spirituality is because I became a Parent when I was 20 years of age, and I didn’t know what I didn’t know. And another reason I’ve struggled with balancing family, work and spirituality is because I tend to go “all in” in whatever I’m focused on doing throughout the day. But I have learned some lessons about family and work balance over the years that I could share with those parents and grandparents.

I began my presentation with the words of the Apostle Paul in Ephesians 5:16-17 when he wrote: “Be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity . . .. Don’t act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do.” In the verses that followed, the Apostle Paul writes about how to make time for and develop a good marriage, how to make time for and develop a strong family, how to make time for and develop a strong career, how to make time for and develop a strong spiritual life (Ephesians 5:18-6:20). I didn’t try to teach the Biblical principles from that Scripture passage to the CCCS Parents because that would have been a 3 hour message. But I did share some tips about “making the most of our opportunities” while at work, home, and in our spiritual lives.

I shared that to Balance Family, Work And Spirituality we have to Pray Daily For Ourselves, Our Family, Our Co-workers And About Work. We need to pray, because when we pray we get God involved in our lives, our family members’ lives, the lives of our co-workers and in our workplaces. And just getting God involved brings a sense of balance to everything and sometimes to everyone. Now at Celebration we believe that God hears and responds to the prayers of His people (I referenced the Damar Hamlin situation), and that He responds to our prayers to give us direction and help in the crucial areas of our lives (James 1:5).

Also, to Balance Family, Work And Spirituality we need to Pursue Quality Rather Than Balance. When we think about balance, we think about giving every important part of our life or person in our life the same amount of time. But that’s impossible for us to do, because there is not enough time for us to do that. Nobody has a perfectly balanced life when it comes to time, and trying to get there will drive us mad. So we have to work on having quality experiences during our family times, work times and worship and ministry times even when we can’t dedicate the same amount of time to the important parts and people in our lives.

To Balance Family, Work And Spirituality we also need to Be Fully Present When We’re At Work, With Our Family Or Worshiping Our God. We have to do that because it’s easy to be physically present and absent mentally or emotionally. So we need to practice devoting ourselves to wherever we are and whomever we’re with in the present. For many of us that means putting down our phone, looking at the people we’re with, and fully engaging with them in conversation or in activities. Think about this – if many people worked at their work like they work on their family they would be fired, because they’re not giving enough focus to that part of their lives.

Also, to Balance Family, Work And Spirituality we need to Plan Fun Activities At Work, Home And With Our Spiritual Family. Life is filled with lots of problems in every area of our lives. And those problems and dealing with problem people often rob us of peace and joy. But if we create fun experiences with the people that we live with, live beside, work with and go to Church with, the fun experiences will help us overcome the problems that we have with them.

Finally, to Balance Family, Work And Spirituality we need to Participate In Spiritual Activities such as Family Devotions, Church Services, Ministry Activities, Life Groups, etc. In the 10 Commandments God said that we’re to keep His day holy – that it’s to be a day for rest and for refocusing our minds and lives on Him (Exodus 20:8-11). Doing so helps us to maintain our focus on the Lord’s presence in our lives as well as His purposes and plans for our lives. And it brings stability as well as productivity to our lives, and to those who are experiencing life with us. By the way, it’s been statistically proven that in general the families that pray together and go to Church together have strongher, healthier and happier relationships.

So let me ask you, how are you doing with balancing your family, work and spiritual lives? Remember what Paul said in Ephesians 5:16-17: “Make the most of every opportunity . . . and understand what the Lord wants you to do.”  When we do that, we will live balanced, fulfilled, meaningful and impactful lives and we’ll make a difference where we live, work and worship.

We got off to a great start in 2023 last Sunday as we began our Steps To Success Sermon series and our 2023 Prayer And Fasting Emphasis. In our Steps To Success message, based on the beginning chapter of the Book of Nehemiah, we learned that to make a difference for good and for God in 2023 we’re going to need to: 1) Care about Hurting People, 2) Dedicate ourselves to Prayer, and 3) Commit to Being a Part of the Solution. We had a great sense of the Lord’s presence in our worship services, and many people left our services encouraged, equipped and empowered. If you weren’t able to join us or if you want to review the message from Sunday, you can catch the sermon by clicking on this link. Please share it with others who would benefit from this message.

This past Sunday, many people began participating with us in our Prayer And Fasting Emphasis. If you weren’t able to do so, you can start today. Participating in “fasting combined with prayer” helps many people to draw closer to the Lord, receive direction from Him, become healthier spiritually and physically, and see miracles take place in their lives or in the lives of those they’re praying for. Some people “fast” 1-2-3 meals a day for 14 days. Others participate in a Daniel Fast (no wheats, meats or sweets), and some fast other things like social media, watching television at night, etc. The purpose of “fasting” is to use this additional time to read, study and pray and get closer to the Lord so that we can better hear from Him and be empowered by Him. For more info, go to www.celebrationchurch.org/prayerfasting

Life Groups have restarted at Celebration, and we want you to become involved in one. Life Groups are small Bible study groups that provide the opportunity for Christians to grow, serve, and lead. But what ultimately happens when we grow, serve, and lead together is we find our place to belong. In a couple of weeks, our Celebration Campuses will be hosting a Life Group Connection Event. If you haven’t yet found your place to grow, serve, lead, and belong with other disciples, that will be a great weekend to get plugged in. And you don’t have to wait. You can sign up to get into a Life Group today by clicking here.

Be sure to join us this Sunday (either in-person or online) as we continue our Steps To Success sermon series, and as we learn how to “Plan For Success.” And bring someone with you who needs to experience the Lord’s help or who wants to experience success in some crucial part of their lives.