Rules are made to be broken. That’s what they say. And maybe we do actually break a few now and then. In this day and age, with all that’s going on around us, it’s hard to not break one.
Some rules make perfect sense. Rules like that are easy to follow. Others can be almost impossible to deal with. These rules are usually even made with the greatest of intentions. Unfortunately, they can often hamper the freedoms of other individuals.
Why do we even make rules like that?
There are some rules you should make for yourself, however. Rules that you promise yourself you won’t break. Not goals, not bucket lists and certainly not promises. Rules.
You have to reach goals. If you have a bucket list, you have to check things off that list. And no matter whether we mean to or not, we often break promises. Sometimes to the people who mean the most to us.
But rules…they’re different.
Where Are They?
There are rules for just about everything. You have rules in school, rules in the workplace and rules in many of the places you frequent such as doctors offices and grocery stores.
They may not be outlined by a sign on the wall, but when you go to the doctor, you know you need to sign in and wait your turn. At the grocery, you shop for your items, find a lane, check out and pay. And so it goes. These rules are common knowledge and people follow them without even thinking about it.
We know those rules well. Most people respect such rules.
Merriam-Webster defines “rule” like so: a prescribed guide for conduct or action or an accepted procedure, custom, or habit. Words like “guide” and “habit” tell us it’s something that, once designed and laid out, it isn’t usually deviated from.
Which Rules Do I Try To Follow?
So what are these rules? I have a few that I think everyone should adhere to. Of course, that is my own humble opinion. If we did follow these though, I think the world we live in might just get a little better!
- Always be respectful. As my Mother always told me, it doesn’t cost a dime and it pays you back in the long run. You never know another person’s story anyway…they might be going through something you know nothing about, so be nice. It’s not nearly as hard to put into practice as it is to ponder. Once you try giving respect, you might be surprised to find that you start getting it back, as well. A respectful person is a person with character, and don’t we all want to be like that?
- Take insults with a grain of salt. They usually aren’t true, and in such case, they have no hold over you. People will stoop to insults for many reasons including jealousy, anger and a general feeling of worthlessness. You might not even know the reasons for any of them. Do not give them the satisfaction of seeing you brought to the low level at which they are already. It’s just not worth it. I bet you have many more important things to do and think about.
- Give, whenever you are able. I know that we live in a world where scams and liars flourish, but there are those who genuinely have needs that we can meet. If we’re able to do so, we certainly should. What about that neighbor of yours? His boss recently laid him off, and he might not be able to afford to buy this week’s groceries. Or maybe they could use some help with the rent? What about your co-worker? You noticed he hasn’t gone out for lunch all week, and he hasn’t brought anything from home either. If you pick up an extra sandwich for him on your own lunch break, it could make his day. Every little bit helps and if you aren’t comfortable giving money, then go and buy the food yourself and drop it off. Remember that 2 Corinthians 9:7 says, Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.
- Don’t be afraid to cry. I spent a good many years of my life not allowing myself to cry, for any reason. I’m pretty sure, looking back on it now, that it did more harm than good. It can make you dry, bitter and cause you to seal off your emotions to the point that you just don’t care about anything, or anyone, including yourself. And that is certainly no way to be! Don’t let the world trick you into thinking it’s a sign of weakness…quite the contrary. It shows you’re strong enough to allow yourself to really feel something. And that can be hard to do sometimes. But we have to remember, that sorrow doesn’t last forever, and that joy comes in the morning. Jeremiah 31:13 reminds us: Then shall the virgin rejoice in the dance, both young men and old together: for I will turn their mourning into joy, and will comfort them, and make them rejoice from their sorrow.
- Always stand up for what is right. Edmund Burke said, “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing”. That is still true today. However, I’m not saying to attack people where they are, especially if they are lost. There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death, says Proverbs 14:12. It is the very heart and flesh of the human to mess things up, and there are some things that simply cannot be condoned, but prayerfully consider any kind of open attack against another for what you consider right.
I’m sure there are probably many more rules that could go on this list, this just happens to be a few of the ones on my mind most recently. Feel free to copy if you wish.