Boundaries/Margins/Limits are probably things I’m going to be writing about for a few weeks. I’m so blown away by the things God is imparting into my heart on this topic…I’m also so thankful for these simple, yet life altering, revelations.
I’ve always been someone that doesn’t rest well…I’ve never been good at being idle. I’ve been programmed to feel (through life wounds and experiences) that if I’m idle, the ‘other shoe’ might drop and cause catastrophe in my life. I’ve felt that if I’m on top of things (controlling my environment and the things I can control) I will bounce back more easily when something I can’t control goes wrong. Can anyone else relate to this?
Priscilla Shirer in “Breathe” commented that in a sociological study when group A kids were given a playground with no fence or borders, they stayed bunched up together and didn’t venture out. When group B kids were given a playground with fences, they combed every piece of the area, explored and had a great time. This is how we should view boundaries…boundaries give us the freedom to explore knowing we are safe within our limits. We won’t be consumed and get off track. This is such a huge revelation to me.
I’m learning that I don’t have to do everything TODAY. I’m trying to define limits for myself around work and even home chores. I’m learning that no chaos will ensue if I leave a few things undone that can be done tomorrow or later in the week or whenever. God is giving me peace through showing me how to set limits…otherwise, I have no limits and I exhaust myself…never stopping because there is always something to be done. It brings me so much joy to realize that work can stop when I determine work can stop…it leaves me time to do the things that are in my heart to do – the things that bring me true joy and fulfillment (going about my Father’s business, spending time with Jesus, praying for others, being in the Word, filling my Spirit) and various other things that I never allow myself enough time to do because I have been so busy trying to do all of the un-fun stuff that I thought was necessary.
I find that I’m excited when I get home from work because I’m going to take time just for myself – to do the things that make my heart dance. It’s amazing. I’m realizing that the things I leave on the table undone will still be there tomorrow…I’m realizing that if Jesus could feed the multitudes on a few loaves of bread, He will also give me the freedom to walk within my limits and still get everything done in time.
I’m thoroughly enjoying this newfound freedom and the peace and joy that come with it. If you are like me and have struggled in these areas (taking time for rest/setting boundaries), please buy this book by Priscilla. God is changing my life through it. This GIFT of boundaries is for all of us, and it truly is a gift. The sabbath was a gift to teach us how to not be in bondage or enslaved to others or things of this world. The Sabbath is a “loving, gracious gift that would break the chains that remained inside of them” (the Israelites and their mindsets of being enslaved as it was all they ever knew). That gets me excited and is a gift I wholeheartedly am receiving.