Life is much like riding a bike. When I ride, I’m rarely perfectly balanced. In fact, as I go through fast turns, I purposely lean my bike so as not to be in balance.This is especially true on my mountain bike, as I blast down rolling hills and around banked switchbacks. It takes skills and a lot of trust in myself and my bike to intentionally lean the bike into unbalanced positions to maneuver through the obstacles and turns on the trails.

Because life has lots of obstacles and turns, I find “balance” to be a tricky thing. It’s popular to say we should live a balanced life. So I did a quick Bible search and guess what? I couldn’t find anything about living a balanced life, not in those words, at least. Instead, the Bible often tells us to live a focused life–to focus on the right priorities: “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life” (Proverbs 4:23). “Seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well” (Matthew 6:33).

Life is about knowing when to lean left, right, forward, and back … sometimes in rapid succession as I navigate the trail in front of me. This morning I need to lean into my wife, later today I’ll lean into my kids. In between, I need to lean forward and pedal hard up the hill at work. Later I’ll lean back and navigate the rocky downhill with a friend in crisis. The trail determines the move. 

The important thing is to stay on the right trail! How? God will make known to me the path of life; He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. His word is a light to my path (Psalm 16:11; 23:3; 119:105). I start my day here, in my relationship with God, so that He can guide me on the right path.

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Michael Mack has been involved in small group ministry as a pastor, writer, trainer, and speaker for more than 25 years. He founded SmallGroups.com in 1995 and started Small Group Leadership in 2012. He became the 12th editor of Christian Standard magazine in 2017 and continues to speak in churches about small groups, discipleship, and leadership. He lives in Pewee Valley, Kentucky (just outside Louisville), with his wife Heidi. They have four young adult children. Michael enjoys mountain and road biking with a group of friends. See the "About Michael Mack" page under About Us for more about him.

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