Tuesday, October 14, 2008

"What does 'Boundaries' Mean?" you ask...

I am currently in a Bible study with 7 other women reading a book titled Boundaries, written by Cloud and Townsend. This is what it is all about:
(I stole this from Rebekahs blog, I thought it was a great description!)


Boundaries are another way to refer to ownership, or stewardship, or responsibility. Remember the cattle brands of the Old West? Successful ranchers burned a unique marking onto the hide of each cow. It was a good system. If a fence broke, and the animals from neighboring ranches mingled, the owners could easily sort out which animals were theirs and which weren't. Without brands, the confusion over who owned what would have been overwhelming.

Boundaries are our own personal "brand." They're a way for us to identify ownership. They tell us what is ours, and—just as importantly—what isn't. People with poor boundaries find themselves continually taking on problems that aren't theirs and neglecting their own.Boundaries are foundational to a sense of identity. They give us a clear sense of where "who I am" begins and ends.

This is essential for us to be able to love. People who aren't clear about their own thoughts, feelings, values, motivations, and behavior can never be sure if some sacrificial act they are performing for someone else was done freely, or out of a sense of obligation, fear or guilt. (Those acts should be done freely, if they're motivated out of a sense of loving God or others.) Clear boundaries are a gateway to a loving heart.

a little footnote:
Clear boundaries help us decide what is ours, and what isn't. They lead to good stewardship over our lives. Without an accurate sense of our limits and Choices, our lives will resemble "a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways" (James 1:8).


Rebekah said...

You tell 'em, girl! :)

sheepdog2352 said...

I just found your site. Love the posts-keep the encouraging up.
Blessing ans have a great Thanksgiving.

Rebecca said...

Thanks John, for the encouragement, it is much appreciated! I follow your blog and really appreciate all of your wisdom!

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