Boundaries Book Update: I am on page 45. That's not very good. But it IS chapter 2! It's good reading. I just use all my time to read other more "pressing" books.
Here is the jist so far:
Chapter 1: A day in a Boundaryless life - the author describes the life of Sherrie, a working mother of two, who has the best intentions but seems to be sidetracked quite often by other peoples needs and requests. She doesn't ever say no and has a hard time taking control of her own time... always trying to help other people fix their "problems" in the name of "sacrifice". At work, she is taken advantage of, a large work load dumped on her because she is capable and willing. At home, she feels guilty because she doesn't spend enough time with her family, her children are acting out and she doesn't discipline well. She works from 6am - midnight, just trying to keep up. She tries to live her life the right way, but she feels isolated, helpless, confused, and guilty most of the time. She isn't lazy, and trying harder isn't working. She's a people-pleaser, which doesn't bring her the intimacy she needs. She struggles with knowing which things ARE her responsibility, and which things AREN'T. She takes on things she shouldn't: her mothers chronic lonliness, her boss's irresponsibility, her friends unending crises, her church leaders guilt ridden message of self-sacrifice, and her husbands immaturity.
Chapter 2: What Does a Boundary Look Like? - The author goes into great detail describing what a boundary is: invisible propery lines and responsibility. In the physical world, boundaries are fences, signs, walks, gates, moats, lawns, hedges. They give out the same message: this is where my property begins. In the spiritual world, boundaries are just as real, but harder to see. Proverbs 4:23 says "Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life.." We are to maintain our heart. The author says that if we were told to "guard a property with all diligence for I will hold you responsible for what happens here" and didn't know where the boundaries were, that would be confusing, frightening, and dangerous. We are told to guard our hearts and our own parameters, but often our family, past relationships, or bondages, confuse us as to what our parameters are. There is much emphasis that we are responsible TO others, and FOR ourselves.
Some examples of boundaries are skin, words, truth, geographical distance, emotional distance, other people, consequences, ...
Things we are responsible for are our feelings, attitudes, beliefs, behaviors, choices, values, limits, talents, thoughts, desires, and love. We are responsible for our OWN of those, not others.
Hm... it's getting interesting.