Jesus and Boundaries
May 16, 2019
“Simply let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one.” Matthew 5:37
Jesus lived life with healthy boundaries and healthy relationships. Jesus set boundaries and practiced personal soul care. We overdo, get worn out, and even burnout. Jesus had far more stress, far more pressure, and far more responsibility than any of us, and yet He remained relaxed, joyful, and generous with people. He was a picture of living in God’s rhythms of grace.
Personal boundaries define your identity like the property lines around a home. This is my property and that is not my property. This is me . . . what I value, am good at, believe, need, or feel, and that is not me.
To know yourself and be secure that you are loved by God is essential to all relationships and activities. The better your boundaries and self-awareness are,the greater your capacity to offer empathy and healthy love to others.Good boundaries give you a stable foundation to operate from, and you are not distracted or depleted by personal insecurities or blind spots. That’s why it’s not “selfish” or unloving to have boundaries and “take care of yourself.”
Study the gospels. You will discover that in His humanity, just like us Jesus had limitations. He accepted in a relaxed manner that He needed nourishment and rest and could only be in one place at a time. He knew there were only 24 hours in a day and didn’t bemoan it. He did what he could.
Jesus had personal needs that He prioritized, sometimes even over the needs of other people, and He did so without feeling guilty. His personal soul care caused Him to separate Himself from people to be alone with his Papa Father. He lived in a rhythm of life that kept him full of God,full of grace and truth, and therefore ready for anything that happened. Jesus did not live on the defensive, overextending Himself and getting more and more tired and irritable. He lived on the offensive, investing time in what was most important.
Jesus loved people without being a people pleaser. He often didn’t do what people wanted Him to do. There were many people He didn’t help. When He did help people, He expected them to do their part. Even in Jesus’ miracles He asked people to do something; usually something they felt they couldn’t do. Jesus shows us how to let our “yes” be “yes” and our “no” be “no,” speak the truth in love, and live within our personal limitations, prioritizing our relationship with the Father.
- Jesus, I want to be more like You. Show me where I am out of line, and help me have courage and determination to change what is needed.