Circus Juggler

by Stan Mitchelll
stressedman3.jpgJohn’s life was spinning out of control. The image that came to his mind was of a circus performer who rode a unicycle and juggled those flaming sticks. John spent his entire day trying to run from one burning fire to the next, trying to put them all out.
His marriage was crumbling, his teenage children defiant and, he feared, on drugs. His job demanded sixty-hour weeks, and he dare not slow the pace down because there were others who would dearly love to take his job.
Then there was his health — his doctor had just told him that he had high blood pressure, and he needed to lose weight, stop smoking and reduce the stress in his life.
Stress? What stress? If he stopped the cycle, the whole circus would go up in flames!
Then a friend gave him the best advice he had ever heard. “You’ll never catch up with all of life’s demands at once. Why don’t you just master the most important one? Prioritize! Make your life right with God, and the other things will fall into place.”
John did just that. He started going to church. He began to read his Bible. He obeyed the things God told him to do in the scripture. And it worked! He still worked long hours, but his life began to quit its downward spiral.
The unicycle stopped, and the fires went out. When John made God the center of his existence, the rest of his life became less chaotic. The odd thing was that with God in the center of his life, all the other relationships came into focus, too.
“When a man’s ways please the Lord, he makes even his enemies to be at peace with him” (Proverbs 16:7, ESV).

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Stan Mitchell

Stan has preached since 1976, in Zimbabwe, California, Texas and Tennessee. He serves as preacher for the Red Walnut Church of Christ in Bath Springs, TN. He is currently Professor of Bible at Freed-Hardeman University. He is married to the former Marjorie McCarthy, and has one daughter, Tracy Watts. He is the author of four books: The Wise Get Wiser, the Foolish More Foolish: The Book of Proverbs, Give the Winds a Mighty Voice: Our Worship in Song, and Equipping the Saints for Ministry. He has recently published another book, "Will Our Faith Have Children: Developing Leadership in the Church for the Next Generation.

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