Author Archives: Dr. Henry Cloud

Boundaries: Pray for Wisdom

Boundaries: Pray for Wisdom

The Serenity Prayer God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. As the Twelve Step movement grows within the church, Christians in therapy and recovery voice a common confusion. Am I powerless over my behavior? If

Establishing Boundaries With Yourself

Learning to be mature in self-boundaries is not easy. Many obstacles hinder our progress; however, God desires our maturity and self-control even more than we do. He’s on our team as an exhorter, encourager, and implorer (1 Thessalonians 2:11-12). One way to begin developing limits on out-of-control behavior is to apply a boundary checklist: 1. What are the symptoms?

How to Set Boundaries at Work

Christians often have a warped way of looking at work. Unless someone is working “in the ministry,” they see his work as secular. However, this view of work distorts the biblical picture. All of us — not only full-time ministers — have gifts and talents that we contribute to humanity. We all have a vocation,

Respecting God’s Boundaries

God expects His boundaries to be respected. When He makes choices, or says no to us, that is His right, His freedom. If we are to have a real relationship with Him, we need to respect that freedom. When we try and put Him into binds where He “has to do something,” we are testing

Difficult Conversations: How to Create Clarity in Conflict

Be Clear about “You” and “I” Any good confrontation takes into account that two people are involved. This sounds obvious, but it really isn’t, and it is an essential part of an effective boundary conversation. One reason you have a problem in the first place is that you and the person you want to confront

Respecting Boundaries

We have personal boundaries, personal property lines, in our relationship with God. God has designed the world so that boundaries are to be respected. He respects ours, and we need to respect His. God Respects Our Boundaries God respects our boundaries in many ways. First, He leaves work for us to do that only we can do. And He

Grace and Truth in Difficult Conversations

A successful confrontation will always involve balancing grace and truth. Grace is your being on the side of, or “for,” the other person as well as the relationship. Truth is the reality of whatever you need to say about the problem. This balancing combination is referred to as being neutralized. Being neutralized doesn’t mean being neutral about the problem – not

Boundaries: When to Say Yes, How to Say No

Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. – Proverbs 4:23 What Do You Mean “Boundaries”? The parents of a twenty-five-year-old man came to see me (Dr. Townsend) with a common request: they wanted me to “fix” their son, Bill. When I asked where Bill was, they answered, “Oh, he didn’t want

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