The swiss Knie Circus was in full swing. Clowns were charging around soaking wet in an act where buckets of water kept spilling over their heads. Elephants were daintily balancing themselves on impossibly small spots. Acrobats were swinging and leaping through the air with breathtaking precision. Horses were marching, trotting, dancing, galloping, their black or white or satin-smooth beige coats gleaming.

Suddenly there was a hush. The tentful of people looked up at a wire that was being made taut. Children of all ages, teen-agers in blue jeans, dressed-up families, old people from a nearby home for the elderly, wheelchair patients from a rehabilitation home, rich people, poor people, the educated and the uneducated—everyone gazed intently at the wire; everyone had a sudden interest in the tightening of the bolts, in the testing steps of the tightrope walker.

A gasp escaped many lips as he started out. Step, step, step, waver, step, step—would he make it across? Then out of his pocket came a round plaque. He carefully bent to fasten it on the wire, put his weight a bit more on one foot, then shifted to the other, as viewers held their breath. Yes, he made it—up on his hands, feet perfectly straight above his head. Then back down again and on with his walk.

Balance—an essential ingredient in every area of life. When God created human beings in his own image, he created them to have perfect balance—and then they fell. In the fallen world there are no perfectly balanced people, but the Word of God provides the tightening of the bolts, so to speak, and gives us the kind of “tension” we need as we start out, stepping into life as Christians. I believe a net has been carefully provided for us: we bounce when we fall, and then get ...

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