Sunday, August 5, 2012

The Wobbles (or, Have You Lost your Balance?)

a recycled devotional by Debra E. Marvin

Mourning Dove perched on a wire.Image via WikipediaWhat do birds and house painters have in common? Your first thought might be “big white splotches”.
Doesn’t sound like a nice way to start a devotional does it?

Well, what I was going for was “balance.”

Birds line up along my utility wires, socializing, and I thought little about that skill until the day I noticed a young mourning dove’s repeated struggle to get it “just right”. Wobble, wobble. I was compelled to watch, like a crowd witnessing a high wire acrobat with comments of ‘whoa, ooh, watch it, oh no’ as the performer defies gravity.

Think of it. How do some of those big birds perch there without just spinning forward or backward on that tiny wire, and find themselves hanging upside down? I’ve lost balance and found myself spinning. Barely hanging on. What about you?

Our lives get upside down in the blink of an eye, don't they?

My mention of the house painter’s balance came not from the work of stretching to paint the eaves, but from the day I moved my longest extension ladder. Sixteen feet. It’s a bit heavy. Dragging it would be very awkward. But if I find the exact middle of the ladder? Voila! I can pick it up easily. Balance.

Balance, it seems, depends upon knowing where to hang on, what to grasp hold of . . . knowing how you center your burden, or how you center "yourself".

God promises to be with us through the valleys and the mountaintop. His word tells us
how to be concerned but not worry,
how to follow our goals without being driven by success.

We need to be content with where we are in the things we can't do anything about, but unsatisfied in those things we can. Free will, remember? Looking down at the path disappearing just ahead of our feet, but remembering to raise our head and move forward, sometimes in the dark, toward what God has for us. It’s not easy.

It's a balancing act! But it can be done.

When you get the wobbles, reach for your Bible and hang on.

Philippians 4:12-13
I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.

Psalm 91:1-2
He that dwells in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in Him will I trust.

Would you share a verse that helped you during your last case of the wobbles?


  1. Great stuff, Deb. This has been a wobbly year... looking forward to standing on the Rock!

  2. Love it, Deb! I'm wobbling! "I will lift my eyes to hills from where my help comes from..." I want to say Psalm 25, but it's escaping me right now cuz I'm wobbling. But at least I have the words. :-)

    Thank you for sharing this.

  3. I needed to read this post, Deb. Thanks for the helpful reminder of where I'm supposed to look and stand.

    I'm still thinking of the bird at the beginning... ;)

  4. Very good insight, Deb. Love the reference to the birds. :)


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