When a child shuts down his painful emotional side, he also loses the ability to express his joyous side. Emotions are a whole. With anger comes the ability to express delight; with sadness comes the ability to express lightheartedness. This is the breadth of emotion that allows an adult to experience intimacy with a spouse, with God, and with his children
One of the first signs that you’re beginning to develop boundaries is a sense of resentment, frustration, or anger at the subtle and not-so-subtle violations in your life. Just as radar signals the approach of a foreign missile, your anger can alert you to boundary violations in your life.
There is a big difference between hurt and harm. We all hurt sometimes in facing hard truths, but it makes us grow. It can be the source of huge growth. That is not harmful. Harm is when you damage someone. Facing reality is usually not a damaging experience, even though it can hurt.
When we can't hold back, or set boundaries, on what comes from our lips, our words are in charge-not us. But we are still responsible for those words. Our words do not come from somewhere outside of us, as if we were a ventriloquist's dummy. They are the product of our hearts. Our saying, "I didn't mean that," is probably better translated, "I didn't want you to know I thought that about you." We need to take responsibility for our words. "But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless... Read more »
Dating is not only a wonderful time of life, but also a context for enormous spiritual and personal growth. You learn so much about yourself, others, God, love, spirituality, and life through dating. Done well, it can be fulfilling in and of itself. Done well, it can be one of the most fun and rewarding aspects of your life. Done well, it can lead to a good marriage.
The idea of submission is never meant to allow someone to overstep another's boundaries. Submission only has meaning in the context of boundaries, for boundaries promote self-control and freedom. If a wife is not free and in control of herself, she is not submitting anyway. She is a slave subject to a slave driver, and she is out of the will of God.
Getting to the next level always requires ending something, leaving it behind, and moving on. Growth demands that we move on. Without the ability to end things, people stay stuck, never becoming who they are meant to be, never accomplishing all that their talents and abilities should afford them.
When we begin to set boundaries with people we love, a really hard thing happens: they hurt. They may feel a hole where you used to plug up their aloneness, their disorganization, or their financial irresponsibility. Whatever it is, they will feel a loss. If you love them, this will be difficult for you to watch. But, when you are dealing with someone who is hurting, remember that your boundaries are both necessary for you and helpful for them. If you have been enabling them to be irresponsible, your limit setting may nudge them toward responsibility.