I’m Not Less Than…

In every home there is usually some sort of do’s and do not’s lain down for the children. Don’t run in the street, don’t touch the stove fire, take the garbage out, make your bed, don’t hit your sister/brother. Each child is taught what they should and should not do.

But what about healthy boundaries? What is a boundary? It is a line drawn in the sand, so to speak, that another can not cross. “You will not hit my sister, you will not use bad language in my presence, you will not break the vows of our marriage.” These are just a few of what is called healthy boundaries.

When a family has abuse; be it physical, emotional, or sexual within a family, boundaries are ignored. Its okay for Dad to sneak into his daughters room at night, its okay for Mom to get beat up by dad, its okay for brother to watch sister take a bath.  Healthy boundaries are ignored and never set in place leaving the child to never learn what is okay and what is not. There are no healthy examples for him/her to follow.

Self respect, low self-esteem, and loss of dignity can be some of the results of having never learned what healthy boundaries are. In order to survive many will turn to trying to please everyone so they will feel loved and accepted. Susie will pretend to be the perfectly sweet girlfriend and shrug off the insults her boyfriend slings at her. She’ll try very hard to be what Mom, Dad, or whoever wants her to be leaving self behind to suffer quietly. Tommy will be okay with hitting his girlfriend or demeaning her to his buddies.

It is imperative that we all learn what healthy boundaries are and how to put them in place. In my own case, my Dad controlled me. There was mind control, manipulation, secrecy, and abuse. For years I never knew I could say, “No” to anything. It took a psychiatrist, in my later years, to teach me that I did not have to listen to the insults and demeaning and accusatory remarks that my Dad would make to me. I had to learn to say, “You will speak to me with respect or I will hang up this phone!” And I did. I set a boundary and adhered to it by hanging up the phone when he began his rants. In time, he learned I meant what I said and began to speak to me in a more respectful manner. Believe me, it is a very powerful feeling of victory when we see positive results from setting a boundary and having it honored.

That is what we must do to overcome a life without boundaries. We start small. We can’t make a legal pad length list of boundaries and expect to be victorious. Those boundaries we set are going to be fought against by some people; friends and family members that have ignored your requests are not going to like having to adhere to the new you. Stay strong in your conviction.

Once we have stated the healthy boundary we must adhere to it! If, for example, we tell someone they are not to open the bedroom door without knocking or just “drop by” without calling, then stick to it! State the consequence of the inappropriate action and stick to it. Otherwise you’re wasting your breath.

God did not create us to be door mats or to be talked down to, disrespected, ignored, or made to feel less than. Neither did He create us to be like someone else. So stop trying to please everyone else! It’s exhausting and a waste of time. He created us in His image. That means we are to be loved, respected, honored, and listened to as a child of God. If you tell someone, “No” and they ignore your no, they are trying to control and/or manipulate you. Your yes means yes and your no means no. And you don’t have to explain it!

Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend authored a book titled, “Boundaries.” They also authored a workbook to go with it, “Boundaries Workbook.” These can be found on Amazon.com and I highly recommend getting both and go to work becoming all that God created you to be.

Another book I recommend to help in overcoming the “people pleasing” issues, which greatly are tied to the issues of boundaries, is a book by Joyce Meyer called “Approval Addiction.” Also found on Amazon.com

We deserve to be respected. We cannot, and never will be able to please everyone. God created you and threw the mold away. You are one of a kind, special and loved by Almighty God. Be who you are and don’t allow others to dictate who they want you to be or to treat you less than you deserve to be treated.

Blessings to you as you step into freedom.

http://www.elahministriesinc.com

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14 thoughts on “I’m Not Less Than…

  1. Just bought Joyce Meyer and plan on listening to it all day tomorrow. I am excited to step into the new with my head held high. Praying for Gods mighty strength and confidence to set and adhere to boundaries. My life was spiraling out of control from mental and emotional exhaustion. I’m fighting and persevering to be victorious. Newly separated and making an effort putting one foot in front of the other. Thank you so much Sue….thank you

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    • You will be victorious, there’s no doubt about it because you are determined and you have the Lord to guide you and bring healing. Praise be to God that He is our Healer. With Him and perseverance you will succeed. Praying He will give you understanding and wisdom. God bless you.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Reblogged this on Maggie Tiggles and commented:
    Sue has some Biblical words of wisdom here:

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I read the Boundaries book a while ago and love that scripture that does say; let your yes be yes and your no, no. Boundaries are so important and GOD gave them to us in HIS word in so many ways. Thanks for this post and explaining the boundary idea so well. Blessings!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Good post, boundaries are important. Sometimes just by addressing the sins of our fathers and mothers we can break that generational thing that happens. It is important to understand our stories, the good and the bad, and declare to God what is good and bad.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Yes, healthy boundaries are essential to our mental and spiritual well-being.

    I had a conversation with my dad such as you had with yours when my mother was in Hospice dying of cancer. It did not go well. I became embittered against him, but not just for that, for about 5 months following her death. But, then I learned he was dying and he wanted to see me, so we drove 500 miles to see him and I forgave him and he died two weeks later.

    But, it was another two years before I truly got down to business with the Lord and he showed me what was still in my heart, which was anger and hurt and unforgiveness against Jesus for not rescuing me from all my suffering. I had to then accept God’s sovereignty over my life and to learn to put on my spiritual armor with which to fight off Satan’s evil attacks against me.

    Setting biblical and healthy boundaries is part of that putting on of that spiritual armor, and I am still learning how to do that as new situations arise, but God gives me strength to overcome.

    Thanks so much for sharing this lesson on setting boundaries. God sets them, too, for that is love.

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    • Hi Sue: So many of us harbor bitterness and anger at Christ, (and others) for not doing what we think He should do or should have done. Forgiveness takes time and although Jesus does not need to be forgiven I have even gone through forgiving Him for not stopping the abuse I suffered. This healing business is a process and as long as we are willing to do the work and seek His healing, He’ll be right there to help us see within our hearts and bring the healing we need. I was able to forgive my Dad, and others, and the Lord continues to work in me also. I’m so glad you were willing to go see your father and forgive Him. Not so much for him, but for you. I’m sure burdens were lifted and that you’re willing to continue in the Lord’s work of setting you free. I hope others can gain some insight and introspection from your testimony here. We’re all in the process of becoming more like Christ. Thank you.

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      • Thank you, Sue. That was 18 years ago that my parents both died. So, it was 16 years ago when I dealt with God, or I should say God dealt with me on this matter of forgiving Jesus and accepting his sovereignty over my life. And, then, 14 years ago the Lord called me to my present ministry. I could not be doing what I am doing today if those matters had not been dealt with at the cross first.

        My dad and your dad sound very similar. Your experiences and mine sound alike, as well. But, thanks be to God that he heals and he delivers and he gives us a new lease on life, if we are willing. I am so grateful for God’s healing mercies in my life. Thank you for sharing what you did.

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  6. God is really good at “dealing” with us. lol No matter how hard we try He’s going to deal with what is getting in the way of what He wants for us. I think, just my opinion, that everything we go through the Lord will use as preparation for His purpose for us. I could not have led sexual abuse support groups had I not lived it or be able to reach out to others in other ways except for the Lord’s healing and His “dealing with me.” The first book I wrote, “Laying Down my Net – A Walk of Faith” is about how He dealt with me, so to speak. It’s how He taught me to trust Him and obey Him, and really shows His faithfulness. If you live in the U.S. and would like one I’ll send you one as my gift. Just send me your address on my ministry e-mail – elah501c@bellsouth.net

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