In Matthew 13:24-30, Jesus tells a parable about the Kingdom of heaven being compared to good seed. However, while everyone was asleep, an enemy sowed some bad seed which grew amongst the good seed in the field. The householder’s solution was to let both of them grow together until the harvest where the reapers will burn the bad wheat and gather the good wheat and store it in the barn.
For me this parable is all about our life balance how do I separate what is good for me against things that only provide gratification and short-term gain? I believe it starts with my own personal well-being. That means a good night’s sleep, a balanced diet and a healthy exercise regime. I find if I sleep well it sets me up for a positive day ahead and I am less inclined to become irritated. Healthy eating habits with a combination of the five food groups ensured I am not feeling hungry throughout the day. Sometimes a lack of food can cause me to be easily aggravated. Furthermore, taking a long walk not only gets my steps up it gives me an opportunity to reflect and pray about my day. These are the three areas I need to tick off every day. Thus, allowing me to be physically, intellectually, emotionally and socially able to prepare with an open mind for the events ahead. It enables me to block out the negative thoughts I may have and focus on my day.
So, having achieved those three goals as the centre of my daily routine how do I deal with the issues that arise from the day? I strive to follow these three principles, to listen attentively, be positive in my interactions and to reserve judgement in all situations that occur. I consider that it is important for the person with whom you are conversing that they feel they are being listened to. I think to that allows for a richer conversation between myself and the person I am talking to. Moreover, that I endeavour in my discussions to have constructive interactions with others. Additionally, when challenged through differences of opinion I reflect on that viewpoint rather than attack it. Therefore, I would argue that these are crucial factors in building positive relationships with everyone.
Consequently, my life balance not only is determined by diet, sleep and exercise but by positive relationships built on attentiveness, fruitful dialogue, fair decision making, prayer and reflection. This engenders character strengths such as empathy, understanding, self-regulation, prudence, perseverance and hope. Ultimately, by demonstrating all these features I find an equilibrium as I work towards being that good wheat that is stored in the barn.