Seven years ago, when my oldest daughter was three, we installed a fence around our backyard. We had a corner lot, so up until that point, I had to be vigilant to make sure my daughter didn’t run into the street. The day we had the fence installed, my daughter RAN the perimeter of the yard with her arms wide-open. She didn’t have to be afraid of the cars anymore. She didn’t have to fear a dog getting loose and coming into her play area. She wasn’t left wondering where the boundary was because it was made clear to her. She felt safe. I was able to give her freedom to play without me following close behind her. Within the constraints of the fence, she was FREE.
As I saw her experience the JOY that came from being given boundaries that in turn gave her more freedom, I felt God speak gently to my heart, “this is what my boundaries do for those who follow me.” Ever since that day, this has been a truth I have wanted my kids to understand fully. We live in a society that will tell our children that rules are restrictions that oppress and stunt those who follow them. As moms, we have the beautiful privilege of speaking the truth of God’s love into their lives and in doing so, helping them understand that His boundaries are in place for our well-being. His rules are not there to rain on their parade but to help them better enjoy this life He has given them. In fact, He put them there because He loves them and wants the best for them.
To best communicate this truth, it starts with how we live. Do we appear to be the angry dog behind the fence, unhappy to be there and barking angrily at all those on the outside? Or are we living out the joy that comes with having God’s fence around us protecting and giving us freedom?
Dear God, thank you for your boundaries. I pray my life would reflect the joy that comes from living within those boundaries to both my family and others you put me in contact with. I pray my children will understand the freedom that comes from obeying your Word and it will be their desire to follow you all the days of their lives. Amen.
Psalm 119:45 “I will walk about in freedom, for I have sought out your precepts.”
Theresa Wegner is a mother of four children. She is a mom’s group leader and wife of the creator of Animo Bible verse trading cards. She also creates parenting tool resources for the cards at www.animocards.com and www.facebook.com/animocards