The first time I remember God giving me a word was when I was 10 years old, sitting on my bed and reading my childhood pink bible…..I remember it SO clearly! What God gave me that day was Proverbs 4.23 and it has always been a very special and pertinent verse to me through the years. God has used it to remind me to keep clear and healthy boundaries – especially when I’m not doing such a good job at it!
Boundaries can be a challenge for so many of us and my boundaries have never been as tested than when I became a mother. Our dear little ones can push our emotional, mental and physical boundaries – and some boundaries we didn’t even know we had!
God tells us how important Boundaries are in the beginning of Proverbs 4.23 when He says, “Above All Else….” . These three words should grab your attention and say Remember this, This is very important! So often when we get hurt or disappointed by people, it is because we didn’t have clear boundaries and so we allowed them to take advantage of our time, love, values etc.
Saying No is not always easy – we are often worried about offending and hurting others or being rejected. But God tells us to “Guard our Hearts”, be clear and have boundaries and “Let your Yes be Yes and your No be No” Matthew 5.37
If we don’t keep healthy boundaries, it can jeopardize not only our own well being but the well being of others and our relationships with them. It can hurt your marriage, friendships, work relationships and your relationship with your children. Boundaries are good and they are there to protect us and our relationships- they are not selfish!
Dr John Townstead and Dr Henry Cloud have an amazing collection of “Boundary Books” and I highly recommend them to anyone who struggles with boundaries and would like to equip themselves to handle boundaries better.