Boundaries with Children

My (Suzy) husband (Gio) went to a camp growing up called Circle C Youth Ranch. The logo was that of a circle with a “C” in the center of it. He said he never really gave it much thought until years later. The “C” stood for Christ and He was to be the center of our life! As Christians, that should be our goal … to have Christ as the center of our lives. But all too often children enter our world and we struggle to keep balance. Our Circle C turns into Circle K (iykyk) and our “Kids” end up taking center stage. Even when we welcome new additions into our lives, God’s original intent for marriage stays the same. We are two individuals intended to become one!

Why Set Them?

I want to reiterate our philosophy behind boundaries. They are not about isolation but about creating spaces where healthy relationships can flourish. This should be most evident with any boundaries created in the home. Connection and unity should be the end goal while establishing parameters. 

For example, time spent with Jesus should be a top priority. Any and all efforts to protect that time should be made. When I spend time with Jesus, I am attempting to keep in step with the Spirit. Keeping in step with the Spirit changes the choices I make on a daily basis. I am a more pleasant person to interact with, which leads to healthier relationships.

Who Benefits From Them?

In a family, I think it’s safe to say everyone in the home benefits from a space where healthy relationships flourish. Therefore, everyone in the home benefits from healthy boundaries. When mom and dad set a boundary around their time together (you get to decide what that looks like), they are investing in their relationship. They are communicating a message to their children that the husband/wife relationship is extremely important and is something to be treasured. When this primary relationship is healthy there is a natural overflow to the remaining members of the family.

How Do We Communicate Them?

Scripture has much to say about how we communicate. How we communicate boundaries plays a crucial role in how they are received. Colossians 4:6 says “Let your speech be always gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.” 

Remember, the goal is for boundaries to bring health. So you want each member of the family to see the value of your boundaries and be on board with them. Present them in a way that will be received and respected!

Grace

After you’ve made the decision to establish some boundaries with your children ... and when you seek to implement those boundaries in your home ... it is inevitable that some of those boundaries may get overlooked. When this happens, you are presented with an opportunity to respond. You can either respond in the flesh and fly off the handle and get mad at those who did not respect the boundary. Or you can keep in step with the Spirit and respond in a manner that displays the grace and mercy that’s extended to us as believers on a daily basis! 

Bottom line - healthy boundaries create healthy relationships!

Check out our podcast with more on this topic here!

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