Devotions from Henri Nouwen’s book, The Inner Voice of Love
Henri talks about setting boundaries to our love. When people show us their boundaries by saying they can’t do something for us, we may feel rejected. We would rather they showed us love, care, and giving without limit. But we also can’t keep giving to people when they ask for more and more of us or it will leave us feeling exhausted, used, and manipulated. We have to set our own boundaries so we can acknowledge, respect, and even be grateful for the boundaries of others. “The great task is to claim yourself for yourself, so that you can contain your needs within the boundaries of your self and hold them in the presence of those you love. True mutuality in love requires people who possess themselves and who can give to each other while holding on to their own identities.” By setting our own boundaries to our love, we can give more effectively and be more self-contained with our own needs.