Compassionate Love: Displaying Compassion for Those Who Struggle with Mental Illness (c)2019 Nancy Virden, Always The Fight Ministries
I called an insurance company, and the phone was answered by a chirpy computer which introduced itself with, “Hi, I’ m Ashley, manager of customer happiness!”
I like the idea of someone managing my happiness. How easy it would be to make my happiness their only concern! No person (or computer!) can do that for me. In the same way, none of us has the power to make or break anyone else’s happiness.
It is our responsibility to be the person we want to be, to live the life we want, just as it is the responsibility of others to choose how they want to be. It helps to know what we are and are not responsible for when we choose personal boundaries.
What are you responsible to do?
- Manage someone else’s happiness
- Be the person you want to be
- Place your decisions under the guidance of God
- Make Yes/No decisions according only to your emotions
- Build and nurture positive and meaningful connections
- Rescue people from the consequences of what they’ve sown
- Rearrange your priorities every time someone says they need your help
- Put up with abuse
- Entrust others to the Lord.
- See that your own needs are met.
- Practice godly priorities
- Be the problem-solver whenever an external crisis or drama occurs
- Keep your eyes and mind open to the realities others face
- Be self-sufficient and never ask for help
Moses led a nation of more than a million people, serving as their only judge. He worked long days, and people who needed his intervention stood in impossible lines in the desert heat.
One day, his father in law came by. He asked, “Why are you the only judge? And why do people come to you all day?”
Moses said, “If people have an argument, they come to me, and I decide which person is right. In this way I teach the people God’s laws and teachings.”
But Moses’ father-in-law had a healthier solution in mind. He said, “You cannot do this job by yourself. Yes, you should explain God’s laws and teachings to the people. But you should also choose some of the people to be judges and leaders under you.” (abbreviated from Exodus 18).
When we want to make a difference in the lives of people, understanding what boundaries to draw has to do with awareness of our limitations.
What are your limitations?
- What I can afford to spend ______________________
- How do I need to limit my emotional energy?
- How do I need to limit myself physically?
- Do I have time to spare? List how many hours and on what days of the week and what time of year, etc.
- What skills do I have?
- Are there other personal limits?
No, we cannot make anyone else happy. If a person chooses negativity, our personal boundaries protect us from becoming negative too.
Know what are your genuine responsibilities, and respect your limitations. In this way, you avoid losing yourself and living for someone else.
Today’s Helpful Word
***** COMMENTS ALWAYS WELCOME
NOTE: I am not a doctor or mental health professional. I speak only from personal experiences with and observations of mental and behavioral health challenges. In no way is this website intended to substitute for professional mental or behavioral health care.
If you are struggling emotionally today or feeling suicidal, or concerned about someone who is, in the U.S. call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or for a list of international suicide hotlines, go here.
If you are suicidal with a plan, immediately call 911 in the U.S. (for international emergency numbers, go here ), or go to your nearest emergency room. Do not be alone. Hope and help are yours.