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A young woman is walking in the street and is looking at the architecture

I’ve been reading a lot lately about being more authentic and honest about our emotions, and setting boundaries in our relationships; and I’ve also come to understand how we can use both our emotions and those boundaries to forge better relationships with the people closest to us.

It’s fascinating.

I used to think boundaries were something that kept people out, but I’m learning more and more that boundaries are what truly allow us to let people in. The perfect boundary isn’t a wall, but a fence with a gate — one that can open and shut, and you’re in control of it.

I also used to think boundaries were selfish — something not of God, but, “the concept of boundaries comes from the very nature of God.”

Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend write:

“God… limits what He will allow in… He confronts sin and allows consequences for behavior. He guards His house and will not allow evil things to go on there. He invites people in who will love Him, and He lets His love flow outward to them at the same time. The “gates” of His boundaries open and close appropriately.

“In the same way, He gave us His “likeness” (Gen. 1:26), He gave us personal responsibility within limits. He wants us to “rule and subdue” the earth and to be responsible stewards over the life He has given us. To do that, we need to develop boundaries like God’s.

Boundaries don’t mean we’re neglecting the people we love. They’ll actually help us love them better.

I was really surprised when I first learned this sentiment, but I’m SO glad I did! With the weekend nearly here, maybe it’s a good time to re-think your boundaries. Who & what are you letting into your heart, into your mind? Is it time to Unplug from a few things? To Detach?