From the beginning – in the Garden of Eden, to our country’s origination and deep into our own family systems, we are a boundary violating culture. The outcries due to racism and sexism that have been brought further into the light in this country are because of boundary violations. If the Covid virus can travel and make it into every country, so can other pandemics.

Turn Inward

Today I want to encourage you (and me) to look deep within to enter the quiet place and seek God’s goodness within. And stop killing God. I wanted to delete that last sentence because it is so dramatic, but I will elaborate instead. 

To the Americans who say I want to follow God – I have a question. Do you think you could be contributing to the crucifixion of Jesus by holding tightly onto your way of knowing? Here’s the thing: Jesus’ message of holism OVER dualism is what got him killed. 

We are image bearers.

God is found within – not way up there, but in here. Let your hand touch your chest and feel your own beating heart.

God is not found by standing in allegiance to any one country that says, “in God we trust.” Sadly, we have systems in place that are not exempt of silencing the oppressed. Take a look around. You will find cycles of abuse and trauma, even in your own family systems. We are a traumatized people and nation.

Dear Americans, we have inner work to do.

Perhaps God is calling you into a deeper relationship to experience love, and to set down the pride that has been eating you alive. God is LOVE. If you’ve made it this far, I want you to know I am with you. I have pride issues too and am always in need of humility. More importantly, the divine is with you.

As long as the sun keeps rising, we are given a new opportunity to lay down human pride and choose humility. This thang is DAILY. Jesus shared how to pray and used the word daily too because he just knew.

Take a Deep Breath

Before we get back to talk of boundary violations, start by taking a deep breath. Close your eyes and pause: take a deep inhale and exhale. Do it again, if you need. By the time I wrap this up, my words could be a lot for some. I just wanted to offer a moment of pause.

Last month, we celebrated Christmas with gifts and good food (those of us with the privilege). It was also a time to remember the birth of Jesus who grew up to experience the ultimate boundary violation of bodily harm from his own image bearers. Jesus said, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” Jesus in all his suffering, still offered us LOVE.

Our God offers love! Are we allowing the divine to reign within?

Or has self-denial taken reign over self-love? Self-denial to the point of dismissal is not what Jesus intended when he said to take up the cross and follow him, but to give up our human pride and lean into love.

It takes a lot of humility to accept God’s love. Jesus said we are to love our neighbor as we love ourselves. So let’s start there.

Love Yourself

We tend to violate our own boundaries and bodies by rejecting ourselves and ignoring our dysregulated nervous systems. As humans, we are good at avoiding the quiet place. And yet God keeps calling out to us gently.

Beloved, come be with me.

I’m still trying to embrace the truth that I am loved. I’m becoming aware of my own patterns that have given me a false sense of worth and love. I tend to turn toward busyness or trying to just “be good” which has led me into an addictive cycle of people-pleasing and deep fear of rejection.

We are a society heaped in addictions. Just look at the stats on porn + sex addiction. It is rampant in our culture! Boundary violations – whether that’s rejecting yourself to fulfill the “needs” of others or rejecting others to fulfill the “needs” of yourself – are in need of recognition and healing.

It is time. Time for healing, time for recovery. Time to lean into our belovedness and not this false sense of worth and false love.

Lean into Holism

Holistic care of the mind, body and spirit is disrupted when we move further into pride and away from seeking God’s goodness which can cause us to exploit the lives of others through boundary violations.

Take some time to acknowledge your inner world. Be kind to your body by listening. Lean into the gentleness of the Spirit. Try to refrain from judging thoughts about yourself. Just notice. The divine is not a harsh judge, but the source of love.

Seek God’s goodness.

“God has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God.”

Micah 6:8

We can learn how to respect one another’s boundaries in our culture, in our communities, in our family systems – in marriage and parenting, in our social media circles and by our internet usage. But it all starts from within.

“Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” << This message was not just intended for them but for you and me too.