Boundaries – Proverbs 25:17

Wake Up Call

When I was little we lived in the small and very charming town of Mount Vernon, Ohio. All the ladies stayed home in those days and the husbands went off to work during the day. Mornings, many of the women met in each other’s homes for what were then referred to as “coffee cloches”.

I wondered why my mother rarely attended these rituals so I asked her. She taught me something wise which I have remembered. She said that a lot of the time the women would get too much into each other’s business and neighborhood feuds would spring up. Best friends often became best enemies with everyone taking sides.

Proverbs 25:17 says pretty much the same thing; “Seldom set foot in your neighbor’s house, lest he become weary of you and hate you.” It’s a good idea to keep boundaries; for neighbors or otherwise. Maybe it seems that by doing so you would only be promoting unfriendliness but it is actually exactly the opposite. Keeping a little space provides much needed breathing room in which the relationship can grow closer and more cherished.

It’s much better to have people complain that they never see enough of you (and mean it) than to have them sigh when they hear your knock at the door.