Boundaries

Jeremiah 5:22
“Fear ye not me? saith the LORD: will ye not tremble at my presence, which have placed the sand for the bound of the sea by a perpetual decree, that it cannot pass it: and though the waves thereof toss themselves, yet can they not prevail; though they roar, yet can they not pass over it?”

I have lived by both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. When a person thinks about an ocean, they can’t help but equate sand along the shoreline. Both the Atlantic and Pacific have sand as the boundaries of the oceans. In fact, it is the sand along the oceanfront that allows people to its waters.

God says in the verse above, “…will ye not tremble at my presence, which have placed the sand for the bound of the sea…” Even creation has its own boundaries. God says about the waters of the oceans, “…though the waves thereof toss themselves, yet can they not prevail; though they roar, yet can they not pass over it…” In other words, creation doesn’t fight against its God-given boundaries. The importance of boundaries in one’s life can be learned from the oceans. Let me give you a few helpful observations about boundaries.

First, boundaries are good. People have always fought against boundaries, but they are good. If God set boundaries for creation, then God meant for people to live within boundaries.

Second, boundaries need to be distinct. God made a distinct boundary for the oceans, and that boundary was the sand along its shore. Likewise, boundaries need to be distinct so that people will know where they are. Ambiguous boundaries are in essence no boundaries because boundaries are defined lines drawn for people to see where not to cross.

Third, boundaries define who you are. The sand along the ocean defines the waters as an ocean; likewise, the boundaries you set for yourself define who you are. People with no set boundaries have defined themselves as rebels because only rebels live without boundaries.

Fourth, boundaries should never move. By definition, a boundary is a defined line. Just like the sand along the ocean does not move, so the boundaries an individual sets should not be up for negotiating. Set your boundaries of what you will and will not do, and leave them there.

Fifth, boundaries help those within to live a life without destruction. The oceanic waters never cause destruction as long as they stay within their boundaries. It is only when they overflow the shore that they cause destruction to everything on the outside of the beachfront. When a person chooses to go beyond the scriptural boundaries which God has set is when they hurt themselves and others. One of the greatest purposes of a boundary is to keep everyone safe. Destruction is only experienced when someone chooses to break the boundaries established by God and authorities.

Sixth, boundaries help others to enjoy us for who God made us to be. People enjoy the oceans because of their boundaries. Property lines are boundaries, and those property lines help neighbors to get along. Whenever those property lines are infringed upon is when neighbors don’t get along. The best way to get along with people is to stay within the boundaries established by God and authorities, for those boundaries is what allows you to live peaceable with others.

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