Tonight I sit here frustrated and hurting. It is interesting how things just seem to fall together at the same time.
Last night at BSF, we were talking about how God set boundaries for the Israelites, for their protection - and He does the same thing for us. I guess I was hit square between the eyes, that I haven't been really good at setting boundaries when it has come to friends and family - and when there are no boundaries, people get hurt. They feel used, they feel abused. And actually the only person that they can blame is themselves, because they didn't set boundaries. Boundaries are good for us, they are a protection for all people involved. But why is it so hard to set them, and even more hard to stick with them.
Today has been another "hellish day" for me, and it just seem to come back to setting boundaries. I have not set those boundaries, and end up getting walked on, used and hurt. But that isn't God's will for my life, or for anyone else's either for that matter. I guess I felt that when it came to my family and my friends, they would love me enough - not to hurt me - to respect the person that I am - but you know what even friends and family are human - and even though they love me, they will hurt me.
If I would have set boundaries a long time ago - I wouldn't be dealing with the garbage I am right now. So as hard as it is - I'm setting the boundaries, I am protecting myself, I am standing up for myself - and not allowing people to use me. I have to laugh, I am good enough to use my contacts (people) I know to help them out, my pocketbook (I guess if it is "green" anyone would be willing to accept it) but yet not good enough to be respected.
A good friend told me once: That which you tolerate will not change. I have tolerated a lot from my family and my friends. First time shame on you, second third and fourth time, shame on me.
As hard as it is I have to do this, so that my life isn't ruled by resentment. Kind of like the old adage about placing expectations on people, because you will be the one disappointed, and the other person won't have a clue what the problem is.
Another friend of mine is dealing with some of the same issues in her family (BOUNDARIES)- and as I try to encourage her, I look in the mirror and ask myself why I can't take my own advice. I am not an ATM, built in babysitter, jack of all trades, caregiver, doormat - for my family and friends. It is God's will for my life that I make myself available to do the things He commands me to do, not what everyone else thinks I should do.
I have a feeling that I am going to be dealing with some rough roads and lonely nights ahead - but you know what, once those boundaries are set - it can only improve the relationships. And like a wonderful lady told me today - if my family and friends aren't willing to respect those boundaries, and be respectful of me, then I have to move on because there are plenty of people out there who will be more than willing to step into those positions.
I am so glad that in the midst of pain, God has sent me wonderful people to encourage me today - not even knowing what is going on. God is so awesome, and I am so glad that He sets boundaries to protect me and my spirit. I just need to remain in them.
To those of you who are my friends and family, who read this, I truly hope that you love me enough to respect me in my decisions about my life. I know there will be a few rough roads, but if we truly treat each other the way God wants us to, with respect and walking in love, we will make it. I do love all of you - but have to start loving myself enough to stand up for me.
If you struggle with boundaries, I encourage you to set some to protect yourself, and be all that God wants you to be.
Just a few thoughts as I walk with the King, s