In the midst of a crazily busy life, I find I crave balance. I wonder if balance is possible. Is there ever a place where the scales will stay just so, or does the pendulum never stay still?

This longing for equilibrium covers so many areas of my life. Whether it be the time I need to spend keeping up with chores verses the time I want to spend amusing myself, or the energy chasing children verses the rest my body needs in order to function, I struggle with focusing on one over the other.

The latest area I am discovering is my marriage. Our reconciliation is still very fragile, and I am finding it hard to strike the balance between taking all the responsibility for our split.. and taking none of it, ultimately blaming him for everything.

For me, I have to keep reminding myself that forgiveness doesn’t mean excusing or justifying behaviour. I need to remember that forgiveness doesn’t mean permission. Forgiveness is about freeing myself from victimhood — that I assign responsibility where it is due, empowering both myself and him, holding us capable of making destructive choices, and that we can and will! make different choices.

Finding the balance between defender and offender is hard. I am not the one to blame — yet I did my part to set up our separation. I wasn’t the abuser..but I did enable it. I could have said something, asked for help earlier — but he shouldn’t have caused that need. How do I separate something so entwined? Where did it begin..what was the cause?

No one deserves such treatment. I firmly, deeply believe this. I did not deserve this. It doesn’t matter what I did or said, he is not justified in his treatment of me.

I want to add a “but” to that statement. I want to say “and yet..” It’s hard to just let it be. I guess I don’t truly believe that I didn’t bring it on myself.

I wasn’t right in my actions. No matter how he treated me, I was not justified in saying and doing the things I did that deliberately hurt him. I wasn’t justified in hiding things, lying, managing…

I want to add a “but” to that too. I want to defend myself, explain why, say “if he hadn’t…”

This forgiveness thing is hard. But what’s harder is accepting the real past, without glossing over, justifying or trying to make me look better or him look worse than it really was.

It wasn’t good. But I don’t need to exaggerate or omit things just to make the story better.

Balance. It goes hand in hand with being honest.

I need to recognize that my struggle with balance, in any area, starts first with being honest about when I go too far in one direction or the other.

Yet again, I recognize God’s truth here. Forgiveness, living right, begins with confession: open, honest, vulnerable confession. I hate being vulnerable. I don’t like being open. And honesty has always been an elusive goal. But I confess, this is the balance I want.

God’s promise is that if we will confess.. If I will confess..He will be faithful.

Balance, I guess, comes down to how much I will trust God to be faithful, and how much I will openly, honestly confess my need for Him.

Still learning, still getting started.