This is a boundary marker between Canada and the United States. We were in line at the Quebec/New York customs a few summers ago when I snapped this picture. I had an interesting conversation a few days ago with an acquaintance who was talking about pursuing further education and telling me all the things he did not want to do or places he did not want to go for various reasons. Either the school was not well-rounded enough, or the internal politics were distateful, or he had no respect for someone who had come from there. At one point I just stopped him and said, "If you want to learn, you can learn anywhere! If Jesus is your teacher, it doesn't matter that the place or the people are not perfect. He can teach you what you need to know."
Yesterday I was thinking about the restrictions and boundaries we often place on ourselves that take us out of trying things before we even consider them. My excuses have included, but not been limited to: age, gender, lack of experience, lack of courage, lack of resources, being a female, my family background, my size, past bad experiences, language barriers, or what others think. I don't believe any of those are very valid motivations at all, in fact, most of the time they have proved to be better de-motivators than anything else. I believe I am to be a lifelong learner and lover. But if I want to learn, I must let everything be a teaching experience; if I want to love, I must chase fear and self-protection away. If I want to change, I must be willing to enter unfamiliar territory. I must be willing to let God set the boundaries instead of being my own border guard.
Where are you not willing to go? What are you not willing to do? Are your answers reflective of a heart fenced in for protection or a life wide open to the possibility that God can and will rearrange everything in your life until you look like Jesus?