When you drink wine, especially a fine red wine, it is recommended that you only fill the glass half way. This leaves room for you to swirl the liquid and allow the oxygen to enhance the aroma and flavor which adds to the integration. It drives me crazy when a waiter will carelessly fill my wine glass to the top, leaving no room for the wine to reach its full potential.
How many times in our lives are we like an improperly poured glass of wine – over the top in terms of duties and commitments? We lack integration and balance. We become overwhelmed by the pressures of work, taxiing our children to yet another event, caring for an elderly parent.
Like modern day Martha’s we scurry from task to task, missing the one good part that brings harmony to our days. It’s hard right? I have written books about this topic and my family still tells me I don’t have it right.
In my experience, especially in today’s age of smart phones and technology, life is more a blend than a balance. We are appropriately blended when we intuitively understand that all aspects of our vocation, our professional, family, community, and church roles, are equally important. We are blended when the various aspects of our vocation support and interact with our spouse’s and children’s vocations as opposed to compete and conflict. We are blended when we truly understand that the purpose of our life is to Worship God and be of service to others.
As we strive to lead integrated lives we know that this side of Heaven we will never be perfect. We lead both/and lives – broken and forgiven, selfish and generous, arrogant and humble, doing and being, worship and service.
The Bible provides a great example of how to live such a life, the woman in Proverbs 31. Her husband has full confidence in her, her children call her blessed, her business associates recognize her as a wise investor and hard worker, she cares for the poor and she buys a field and plants a vineyard. As much as I am in love with Laurie this is the woman of my dreams. At a minimum she serves as a role model for us all.