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nextTalk contains content of a mature nature. Parental guidance is advised. Today we’re doing a show called Finding the Balance. This is Mandy. Kim is not in the studio today because I have my husband here. Hello, matt.
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Introduce yourself, babe.
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Matt, tell people about you. We’ve been married 20 years. We just celebrated our 20th. Okay, tell them about you, though what do you like? I can name off what you like.
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Well then, why don’t you?
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Well, I’m thinking guitars and cars Cool cars, expensive cars. They’re cars we can’t afford.
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Things we don’t have money or time for.
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You’re a business guy, work in the business world and we have two kids together. If you all don’t know, we have a 15-year-old, almost ready to be 16-year-old, and a 12-year-old. And today we’re talking about finding the balance, because I find myself using that word a lot and I find myself that you’re not paying attention when I say it, and I got a little irritated about that a while back and I think that’s kind of what prompted this show. Do you remember what we were talking about?
0:01:44 – Speaker 3
No, but I do remember thinking balance is boring.
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That’s what you said to me. You said, okay, so let me take us back. So you were stressed out and I remember you coming to me saying I’m ready to start this workout thing. There’s no time, like I don’t have time for this, like where am I going to fit it in? Because I’m either taking away from work or I’m taking away from time with the kids. I know I need to do this for my health, right? And you were kind of venting about all the things that you struggle with, which they were all valid concerns, and I remember kind of being on my high horse saying, well, babe, you just you got to find the right balance, like it’s all about the healthy balance.
0:02:27 – Speaker 3
Yeah, I didn’t like that.
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You didn’t at all and you kind of snapped off and you were like balance is boring.
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It is boring.
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And you even said I like risk, like I like exciting, like all or nothing. Let’s do it.
0:02:41 – Speaker 3
Well, look, I mean, in life we have speed limits, right, we can’t go supposedly can’t go over a certain speed limit. We have to pay a certain amount of taxes. We’ve got, you know, we’ve got to act a certain way at work. We have to. You know, there are so many limits and so we have.
0:03:00 – Speaker 1
Like political correctness yeah there’s that.
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I mean we are expected to always balance everything, and sometimes balance it’s just, honestly, it’s boring.
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So I want to talk about that because I think, when you said that it was like a light bulb went off in both of our heads, that we’re looking at balance differently, we have different views of it and when we were using it to discuss our practical day to day lives, that’s why our communication was shutting down a little bit, because we view it differently.
0:03:32 – Speaker 3
Yeah, probably do.
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And so we kind of dived into, well, this is how I see balance, right. And so I went to Matt and I said, well, for me, you know, I think about Jesus and I think about his life and how he spent his time and his resources right. And in my mind there’s three categories there, you know. One is that Jesus poured into his disciples, right, and so in my mind that equates for me pouring into my family, you know, that core group of people that I’m trying to disciple and raise up to be productive humans in the world, right. And then I looked at Jesus like his work. You know he spoke to the masses, he saved, he healed. You know he did miracles. That was his work category. And then I looked at the time that he spent in.
You know we like to call it self care, we did a show on that. But I would say, like your time with the father, you know your quiet time, the be still, and know he would go off to pray by himself, he would, he would. There was this closeness, this relationship that he was submitting to his father, right. And so, again, we call it self care. There’s lots of different things, but I look at those three categories and I try to find the balance with my three things there you know. So I have my family, that I’m discipling, which is the 12 disciples in Jesus. I have my work, you know any work that we all do. We all have work right, and then we have the time, or alone time, but you see that very differently. When I said that to you, you were like I don’t think Jesus. Because I said I think Jesus is balanced and that’s what I’m striving for, and you said to me I don’t think he’s balanced.
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I don’t. I don’t view Jesus as a great example of balance. I view Jesus as quite the opposite.
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So tell me how you view it.
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Well, I mean, of course, you him. Yeah, I mean the dude didn’t. Miracles, right, water in the wine. I mean the assortment of various miracles, which is not a what you would think of when you think of a balanced person. He stood in front of you know. He stood in front of Pilate, as Pilate was asking him what. You know they say you’re the king of the Jews, are you the king of the Jews? I mean, at any moment he could have literally defended himself and not gone to the cross. He knew what needed to be done. He literally stood in front of the government, eye to eye, and said I, you know, I am who you say I am.
0:06:06 – Speaker 1
That’s not a balance, that’s not, you know well, that’s extreme, that’s risk, right, that’s what you’re saying, I mean.
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I’ve, yeah, when we saw, when you and I talk about balance, I think balance means I kind of have to give a little here to get a little there, and I’ve got to find that safe, comfortable middle point.
Cozy, the cozy spot, the area where there’s less risk, it’s safe. Yeah, a balance to me. When you say find the balance, I think finding a comfortable, safe, convenient place to be where there’s no risk, there’s very little return and it’s boring. And I don’t see Jesus did any of that. Actually, I see everything Jesus did was risky. Everything Jesus did took an enormous amount of effort.
0:06:58 – Speaker 1
And faith, well, I mean, and he was God. But on our part, we’re asked to you know.
0:07:03 – Speaker 3
But, and from our standpoint, when you say you know, honey, I think you should just try to find a greater balance, I think that sounds really boring.
0:07:14 – Speaker 1
So this conversation has really helped us because now I understand and I agree with what Matt is saying. Like I agree that he has a valid point and I understand now why he was so dismissive when I kept talking about balance right. But I think we’ve kind of come to an agreement. Maybe we’ve kind of talked and duked this out a little bit.
I think at the end of the day, what we’re trying to say is, with his time Jesus was balanced. You know how he used his time and spent his time right. He did portray some sort of a balance there, but when God called him to do the hard things, the risky things, the things that were of God, he didn’t hesitate. And I think that that’s the distinction we have to make here, because sometimes God calls us out of our comfort zone, he calls us out of the boat, he calls us to do risky, uncomfortable, he calls us to sell our, all our possessions and go to the missionary field, like he calls some of us to do that right. And we can’t say, well, that’s not a healthy balance and ignore the call of God on our life Right. And I think that’s kind of where we’ve kind of met in the middle, where now you kind of appreciate my understanding of balance. But I see your balance and it’s broadened my perspective.
0:08:40 – Speaker 3
Yeah, I, here’s the thing. I understand what you were saying about balance, and balance I think is is not a bad thing, but when balance jeopardizes your purpose in life and in the case of Jesus, very clear purpose, you know it’s, and I do think it was an interesting. I think it’s interesting that Jesus probably was both balanced and not balanced at the same time in the fact that he was very purposeful and why he was here, why he came, but also demonstrated how you can lead a purpose focused life of, on mission, but also, you know, still recognize you got to eat while you’re doing it.
0:09:29 – Speaker 1
I love what you said and help me with how you just phrased that. You said if balance prevents your purpose, then that’s the issue. I think right, it’s like anything else.
0:09:41 – Speaker 3
If you’re too extreme and your extreme lifestyle limits your God-given purpose, or if you’re too balanced and it limits your purpose, or you’re too lazy and it limits your purpose, then, whether it’s laziness, whether it’s balance or whether it’s extreme, it’s not what you should be doing. You need to make adjustments.
0:10:02 – Speaker 1
This has helped me so much in our communication and I just want to encourage you married couples out there, when you’re trying to talk to your spouse about something and you’re not getting their reaction that you thought you would get on an issue, think about, go back to this basics of definition of how do you feel. Why do you feel that way? You know, because we see it totally different now and now. I appreciate so much what you’re saying and I get it when you put it in those terms.
I go back to writing the book and how, when God called me to that, I knew it was going to throw everything off balance. I mean, I remember telling you we’re getting ready to enter a season where I’m not going to be able to do the laundry and do like all the things. We have to have a whole lifestyle adjustment here and we didn’t let that stop us because we knew that that was the call of God in our life and it was risky and it was extreme and it was crazy. But the Holy Spirit you can’t deny the Holy Spirit just because you want to be comfortable.
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Darrell Bock Back to your point. Really good, I think, definitions. What do you mean by that, sarah Dugan?
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Darrell Bock. I think it’s dangerous whenever couples that are married and have been married for any length of time, I think it’s dangerous for them, just because they know each other so well, to think that they are still, they are so similar. If I ever wrote a book about this, which I won’t I would probably call it at least 10% off. And I say that because, ironically, on our drive over here I was looking at our air conditioner in our car, sarah.
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Dugan oh my gosh, here we go, darrell.
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Bock, we have this multi-zone climate control and this was the case today and it is usually the case. You are always 10% higher temperature on your side of the car than me. Today I was at 71, you were at 78. So, even though we’ve been married for 20 years, we know each other better than anyone else knows us, and we probably couldn’t be closer than anyone else close to us, and we think we know each other so well. We are still, no matter what, always at least 10% off or different, and so 10% in the way we like the temperature of our environment could in many ways extrapolate, in terms of how we think and how we define things, to probably much more than 10% different in many other areas.
0:12:36 – Speaker 1
Which is a great example of why you got to have the conversation. How are you defining it? Because we were seeing it totally differently.
0:12:42 – Speaker 3
We were at least 10% off.
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If you’re just now tuning in, this is nextTalk Radio at 2pm on AM 630, the word nextTalk Radio is sponsored in part by PAX Financial Group and listeners just like you. Everything we do at our non-profit to keep kids safe online is accomplished through your donations To support our organization. Go to nexttalkorg and click on give. If you’re just now tuning in, this is Mandy. Kim is not here today because I have my husband, matt, here and we are talking about finding the balance. And if you didn’t listen to the first part of the show, you probably need to, because we really defined how we were seeing balance differently and how that has really transformed the way we communicate about it. And so it’s kind of like going back to the basics, like why do you define it that way, why do you look at it that way, and really digging in deep, and then that will really help your conversations. We’ve kind of did all that on the show and I kind of want to switch gears down.
I kind of want to talk about the actual balance, kind of how my view of definition is how we spend our time, how we spend our resources, how we parent. I kind of want to look at three different areas and we’re going to have to go pretty fast because we only have the second half of the show left. But I want to talk about work-life balance. I want to talk about spending versus saving real quick, and I want to talk about being a digital parent. So let’s dive into that really quick. So, work-life balance. What I would say most of all is everybody struggles with this. There are so many demands put on us today that everyone struggles with the work-life balance. So first recognize that and then I would also say, do a lot of trial and error on what works, wouldn’t you say that? And like different seasons is going to be different schedules.
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Yeah, absolutely yeah. There’s no doubt about that. I find, in terms of work-life balance, my understanding of it and how I approach it has evolved a lot over the past 25 years or so and of course it’s going to as different life things are thrown at you, people that we know who have had a child with a major illness, of course you ask them work-life balance, what does it mean to you? And it’s going to be a lot different than a single male or female. That, you know is a career, you know 20, 25 year career.
0:15:51 – Speaker 1
Crisis puts things in perspective. Exactly, crisis puts things in perspective.
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But I listen, I would totally agree with you Work-life balance is really is really, really difficult, I think. I think Satan uses that as a really major tool as well.
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I do too. I think that he manipulates us into thinking well, you can’t add that Bible study onto your plate, you can’t do that ministry I’m calling you to do because you have too many other obligations.
0:16:18 – Speaker 3
Just talking to a friend last night and he made a really great point that I think many guys understand. As a man, we define ourselves often by our title or our job or what we do, and that’s really tough to get around.
0:16:33 – Speaker 1
I’ve seen you really handle this really well over the last couple years and really be able to talk a lot about that and I-.
0:16:44 – Speaker 3
Prescriptive medication as helped.
0:16:46 – Speaker 1
No, I think what it is is that the more your faith deepens and the more I see you relying on God, the less your title means and the less you find your worth in that title or that pay or whatever.
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Yeah, I still fall down.
0:17:03 – Speaker 1
But I think that’s very similar, though, to how kids view themselves on social media and their identity. You know, the more their faith deepens, the less they feel about what the online world is telling them to feel, and I’ve seen it play out with you and our kids simultaneously. It’s been kind of cool. The other thing I would say with work-life balance is disconnect from your phone A lot of times we don’t realize how much that phone is sucking the time out of our day and just disconnect, be real intentional about it and also schedule things on the calendar. Like, be intentional with your time. That is gonna take. You just have to make it a priority and schedule.
Okay, we don’t have a ton of time left, so let’s move on to the spending saving balance. Okay, cause this is a big ongoing conversation in our home. I think we’ve talked a lot about generationally. We have seen families and different, even just the world in general will be very poor, and then we’ll almost swing the pendulum all the way to the other side, where we spend everything or wanna do everything because we’ve found success in money in gotten money Spending saving balance a bit of a first world problem.
And instead of just finding that center, that balance is what I would say. And you’re like oh, that’s so boring, right, but we have a difference of opinion on how we spend our money, because I’m not a spender Like I don’t buy purses, I don’t buy shoes, but yeah, I wanna book that vacation. That’s what I spend my money on, and it comes from a childhood thing. I didn’t get to travel a lot when I was a child, and so it’s important to me.
0:18:48 – Speaker 3
But do you see, how Kids love vacation mom, by the way.
0:18:51 – Speaker 1
The other thing is, though do you see how that could get out of control? Because I could wanna give my kids travel the world, and I could swing the pendulum so far that we don’t save anything and we travel everywhere, and that’s not healthy either, because, again, it’s about the balance. There is good, healthy things about balance.
0:19:10 – Speaker 3
You know these past two topics work-life balance, spending and saving balance. I don’t think there’s anything new here, right, there’s. For decades, at least in the United States, I think, families have struggled with this, from the white picket fence of the 1950s and the traditional single family income with the man, work and whatever. All the way up to now, the 2019, going into 2020, things have changed a lot. I think people still struggle with those, but what is relatively new is this concept of digital parenting, at least the past probably five years, and I think we’re really at the forefront of it from a global perspective.
0:19:54 – Speaker 1
Well, and I’m glad you kind of made that transition because, again, here’s where I found the value and balance. So to me, an extreme risky situation is giving a five-year-old a phone with no guidelines and you just are there. That’s extreme to me and that’s risky and I don’t feel like God would call us to do that right, because it’s just, it puts them in harm’s way. But with balance, I feel like with balance, we found a sweet spot with our digital parenting, because I think in the beginning, in the very beginning when we became, we realized that we were going to be this cyber parent that we had to be, our whole thing was protect and bubble wrap. Don’t give them a phone until they’re 18. We’re going to protect them from everything. And do you see how?
Giving a kid a five at five with everything, and then not giving them any access and delaying it and not allowing them even any technology, those are two extremes, right, and so when I talk about balance, that’s why I’m so passionate about it and why I got so irritated when you didn’t see it. The way I saw it is that I see this balance in the middle of where we’re teaching our kids how to use technology, like we’re teaching them to drive a car. This is their world. They have to know this for job skills, for school. So we’re allowing them to use it, but we’re doing it with safe perimeters. We found a balance of what works. We’ve guidelines making sure they don’t have phones in their bedrooms or their bathrooms, making sure we’re constantly having the dialogue of what they’re seeing online so that we can talk them through it, and that’s why I feel like I appreciate balance so much more. When I put it in those perspectives, does it sway you at all?
0:21:54 – Speaker 3
It sways me greatly because I fully agree and when you give that balance, that definition, I am 100% behind it and agree and I think this has enormous ramification. So we, particularly in the US, have not seen the full effects of what digital impacts, what this digital world of social media and full access to global internet information can have or has had or can have on a generation of people who are productive in their 20s, and we’re starting to see that with the millennial generation. But it seems like just the past couple of years is when you start to see behaviors in young kids come out that we’ve not ever seen before and many people are attributing that, whether it’s gun violence or anything else. Many people are attributing that to video games and social media and cyber bullying and these types of things. And I, back to your point, fully agree if you fail to have some balance and proactively manage this, you’re going to have some major problems.
0:23:11 – Speaker 1
Well, and just when we look at statistics on screen addiction and the story is that we have coming into us about, you know, my kid left for college and they can t turn on their phone you know there’s no balance with the screen. And so being able to model this in our homes for our kids so that when they leave, they already have the tools to be able to know, okay, I need to limit myself to social media for this many hours or I need to limit my gaming for this many hours, and I think that is a healthy way to look at balance. But you know, I do kind of want to go back to your point that you brought up at the beginning of the show, which I think is so good. Is that sometime God calls you to do the risky, he calls you to do the extreme?
And you cannot say and one of the perfect examples of this is when I was writing the book I literally kept telling you we need to wait 20 years and see how this all turns out. Like we feel like we’re learning a lot, but what if we’re not learning anything? And God was like no, no, people need help now. People need this dialogue now. You don’t have to have it all figured out. You don’t have to understand everything, but what I need you to do is start this conversation.
0:24:28 – Speaker 3
And I remember many, many conversations we had where you said I’m not qualified.
0:24:32 – Speaker 1
I’m not qualified. Who am I?
0:24:33 – Speaker 3
I’m a mom. Look, reality is none of us are qualified to do this. But if we’re called by God for a purpose, it’s not us doing it Right, we’re just. We’re just the tool, yeah, and so that’s where I, you know, I think maybe we’ve come to an agreement. In some areas of life, balance is good and other areas of life, when you’re got God a hundred percent and direction, clarity, and he asks you to do something that was really, really crazy, but you know it’s coming from God, you throw balance out the window and you go for it.
0:25:09 – Speaker 1
Think about Noah. Everybody looked at him and said what are you doing, dude? Why are you building this arc? What if he would have stopped building it?
0:25:16 – Speaker 3
They hadn’t experienced rain yet and he was building the arc right.
0:25:18 – Speaker 1
They hadn’t experienced rain and they didn’t know water’s going to fall from the sky. What are you talking about, Right? And so sometimes God calls us out of the comfort zone and we have to be obedient to that when he does Agreed. Thanks for being here, Hen.
0:25:33 – Speaker 2
Thanks for joining us on nextTalk Radio with Mandy and Kim on AM630, the Word. You are not alone trying to figure out how to parent in this digital world. We are here with practical solutions to help you. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Find our video series and podcast at nexttalkorg. Are you ready for the nextTalk?
Transcribed by https://podium.page