Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Rules!....the word doesn't really bring shouts of cheers from most kids! (or adults for that matter!) But we all know they're necessary if we want order and productivity. I taught my kids that freedom means living responsibly within the boundaries...not doing what I want. Freedom is only possible for self-governing individuals, families, communities, and nations. If I govern myself and choose to live within the moral boundaries God gave (only 10 mind you) I will experience the greatest amount of freedom. But when I insist on my own thing and everyone else insists on their own thing, Big Brother steps in and tells us what we will do...and we lose. Govern yourself or be governed by another. And sadly, we are becoming more and more governed by another.

I wanted my children to grow up knowing this truth...that rules are good, and if we obey the few that God has given us, we can enjoy many freedoms. I came up with six simple Rules of our House that would help foster a climate of personal responsibility and consideration for others. They had to memorize them and practice them. With seven kids and six who were boys, this was a necessity! And ya know what?? It worked! Our home was quite peaceful, there was respect and consideration for others, little fighting, and lots of fun. Of course other training was always taking place, but these rules created an atmosphere where other things could be taught. It taught them to be responsible for their own actions and aware of others' feelings. Rule 5 is especially important...."I will behave in such a way as to make OTHERS feel comfortable." Self discipline and freedom go hand in hand. Let's be examples of that and diligently teach that to our young so we can lead peaceful and quiet lives.


  1. This is good! Pet owners need to teach the same principle to their pets, rather learn them first, then it will be easier to teach and give their pets manners. I have unruly pets run thro' my soggy wet yard, leaving paw prints for me to later stomp down, a million at a time. While my dog is on a cable line, minding his own business, going in and out of the garage as he chooses. It is a real treat to take him for a walk, with or without the leash due to his following commands and staying close.MJ

  2. As always, Patty, a fantastic post with oh, so much truth and wisdom!! And if the original 10 are just too many for you, and Patty's wonderful six are still a struggle then remember Jesus's "rules"....then 10 summed up in two....Love the Lord Your God with all your heart and love one another as yourself! And you are sooooo right! Follow the basics and peace reigns....don't and someone else will step in to take the reigns;-)
    God Bless you,Patty!

  3. Patty, I always love what you have to say, and this was no exception. Can I come live with you? Great words of advice.