Got Balance?

Posted by: DVULI | August 24, 2023

A dictionary page with the word "balance"

By Jordan Francis (Phoenix 2018)

Fall is upon us! Schools are back in session, club sports have started again, and many of us have program launches on the horizon. One thing that can go out the window once we hit the fall is balance.

For those of us in urban ministry, we juggle multiple things at once to build upon and sustain what God has called us to in our youth work, and, at the same time, we need to care for our families at home.

If we are being honest, most of us would say balance is the last thing we think about when it’s time to grind.

Here’s DVULI’s definition of the core value of balance:

“Effective leaders understand the importance of living a balanced life,

concerned with the development of the whole person.”

So how does one find balance?

Balance looks different for each of us. We all have varying capacities and responsibilities and are at various stages of life.

With all of this in mind, here are some tips to help you strike balance this fall:

  • Sleep

    Make sure to get a good night’s rest. Lack of sleep can affect our moods, attitudes, and productivity. You would be surprised at what eight hours can do for your body, mind, and soul. I don’t know about you, but it becomes almost impossible for me to be effective when I don’t get enough sleep.

How could you add one more hour to your current sleep schedule (if you need it)?

  • Eating

    Eating well is essential to keeping our energy levels up and preventing crashing during the day. In our line of work, eating food that isn’t good for your body is easy. Hanging out with youth usually means plenty of fast food. We must consider what we eat and how that will affect our ability to do everything else. Also, staying hydrated throughout the day helps us stay alert and energized.

What’s one thing you can change to improve your current eating habits?

  • Exercise

    Exercise is an essential component to balance. It helps clear the mind and reduce stress, helping us be more productive and physically healthy. I know many of us don’t find exercise fun or rewarding, but think about it this way: the healthier you are, the longer you’ll be able to serve Jesus, your family, and your community.

What do you do for exercise each week?

  • Sabbath

    Take a day to rest and recharge with God. Rest reminds us God is at work when we are not. We also need to remember that God isn’t primarily interested in us doing stuff for Him but in being with Him. Sabbath is an opportunity to reflect on all God is and be with Him.

What day are you going to rest each week?

  • Relationships

    Connecting with family and friends is an integral part of the balance. Relationships help us stay grounded and emotionally connected. We need people around us who remind us we are loved and appreciated, not for what we do, but for who we are.

Who are those people in your life that encourage and love you? Are you spending enough time with them?

  • Leisure

    We need time away from what we do, enjoying life and what makes it beautiful. Whatever you find fulfilling and fun, make room for it. Some of your best ideas will come from walking away from what you do. Go and enjoy a walk, a game of pick-up basketball, a favorite family pastime, or whatever you do to find leisure. Time for things you enjoy will keep you in the fight long term.

What do you love to do that isn’t related to your work? How can you fit it into your schedule this fall?

No matter what stage of life we are in, balance will always be essential. I pray the Lord is with you, DVULI family, in whatever you put your hands to this fall!