We all used to hear it from our peers when we were growing up and as young adults. “Rules are made to be broken.” There are novels, jokes and songs about that very quote. When we were all younger (those of us who are parents now hear it from the other side) “It’s not fair!” was a common phrase that usually preceded the statement, “Rules are made to be broken!” When we’re kids, learning and reaching various stages of mental development where needs wants and desires are all that matter, this makes sense. At some point we progress in the understanding that rules are in place to keep us safe and others safe. Period.
I learned early that breaking the rules was not a good thing. I clearly remember in my mind 3 particular incidents. One falling from a tree I was told specifically NOT to climb and landing flat on my back which knocked the wind out of me. Worse than that feeling was the feeling of begging my brother to not “tell” on me. The 2nd incident involved me not getting up when I was asked. Part of my getting up in the morning meant feeding my Guinea Pig and giving him water. I didn’t get up when I was asked and the Guinea Pig died. The worst and most memorable incident of breaking the rules was when I skipped school in favor of going to the barn and spending the day with my horse. While I was busy whiling away my day my Mum had fallen on some ice and broken her ankle, badly, and they called the school to have me pick up my sisters at their school. Nope I wasn’t there. I don’t remember the punishment I think my parents let the punishment of guilt and confinement to my room suffice for that one and it worked for the most part. I don’t think I skipped school after that.
These days there are some rules that I unknowingly break, but for the most part I follow the rules. I follow them for two reasons. First, my experience in breaking the rules has always been swift and relatively brutal. Second, because in regards to the law I know they are put in place for safety and an offshoot of that is that Biblically we are told to obey the laws put in place by the rulers of our town, province and country because God has put those individuals in charge.
Another reason I follow the rules even in the face of others saying they’re unjust or don’t work is; how else are you supposed to factually prove they don’t work if you don’t follow them? Perhaps a deep question, but really? I had the delightful opportunity to work in a call center. There following rules is paramount however baffling they seemed to be and however enigmatic. It seemed there were some who understood what it would take to change a rule in 90% of the cases that meant proving the rule didn’t work by following it, but most wanted instant gratification of not having to follow the rules. Again, the “rules are meant to be broken” mentality kicked in. Needless to say most continued to break rules that never changed.
There isn’t many laws I would question in regards to the reason they are in place. I might question the eating and driving law that they are working on enforcing but then drinking and driving is not harshly punished where I live so unless we’re eating a hash brownie or a shroom pie I don’t see where cutting back the eating and driving will decrease the number of accidents if that is the reason behind that law (just a thought for the local governing bodies).
It does make me wonder why my being aware of the rules seems to mean my resulting consequences are far more rapid than say someone that breaks the rules constantly. We all know people like this I’m sure. The ones that manage to get away with everything. I figure that this must be in God’s hands. Even if we look at the “rules” such as the 10 commandments they really aren’t orders to make us do something we don’t want to. They’re more like how to live life without feeling like crap. Really does it feel good to cheat someone out of something? Lie to someone? Kill someone? The first two I can vouch for during my life time…it feels like crap…emotional guidance system says, “hey get back on the road and be nice because you’re going to make yourself feel like crap.” The last one, killing someone, I hope to never vouch for whether by accident or on purpose. So I ask all of you, why do we continue to break the rules? Have we not all grown up enough to figure out that rules are there for a reason? And that reason is not just to break them?
The Gospels say the Biblical rules can be summed up in TWO rules. Love the Lord with all your heart and love your neighbour as your self. Perhaps all we really need to do is…
Think about it!
©Adrienne McLeod 2011
One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people.
He said, “My son, the battle is between two “wolves” inside us all.
One is Evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.
The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.”
The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: “Which wolf wins?”
The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”
Excerpt from: You Are Not Alone – by Frances Black
A friend sent this to me this morning and when I read it the first thing that popped into my head was the healing of our minds spiritually. There is a growing movement toward positivity which I wholeheartedly embrace because I believe that is the message God sends to us. I don’t believe that God wants us to be unhappy and I believe that is clearly outlined in every spirituality. I have yet to see one where the goal is unhappiness. Most unhappiness we bring on ourselves.
When we turn our attention and focus to what we want to be or the change we want to see in our lives that is what we will see the most of. That is a way of feeding the “wolf” we choose to feed. If we want to be happy then we feed that “wolf”. We “give” positive. If we want to experience life in the negative we feed the negative. Everything needs fuel to grow, whether a belief, a living creature, or an idea. Without the fuel it withers. If there is no fuel to feed it in the first place it wouldn’t live. Unfortunately there are those that continue to believe by being, doing and experiencing the negative they can bring to themselves positivity and love.
This is the direction given to us. To love, to do what is “right” and to follow the commandments laid out, to resist or turn away from that which is not positive. In today’s society those 10 Commandments should be aptly named The 10 Secrets to a Happy Life. It’s true isn’t it? Think about it. Seriously.
We can not force others to want happiness nor can we force others to admit that living a positive life feels better. On some level every being knows that it does. We can lead and we can feed the “wolf” that inspires the positive aspects of life.
All of the positive becomes possible when we believe and have faith in God, in a power greater than ourselves. Greater than ourselves because we can not define it. Greater than ourselves because God is. The very knowledge that we have allows us that great concept. It’s a paradox really. It is our inability to describe and define God that give us the knowledge that He is greater than ourselves.
Which wolf are you going to feed today? Will you feed the good wolf or the bad wolf? I recommend the good wolf, it is my experience that in feeding a bad wolf you’ll get your hand bit, and that doesn’t feel good to anyone.
©Adrienne McLeod 2011
“I believe in all that is, seen and unseen.”
In my years growing up going to church and being part of a really great spiritually aware family, I always felt at odds with myself. On the one hand I believe in energy, healing and miracles, I believe in the force of good and evil, I believe in negative and positive, I believe that God is in all creation. On the other hand there is the “these things are wrong” doctrines and thought. As we are growing up and begin to question things around us that we see we also begin to ask questions about the unseen.
One of my favorite parts of the church services that I have experienced is when we all say together the Nicene Creed and Confession of Sins. Mostly I think because it states what we do believe and it’s a group admission that we all screw up. (When we’re growing up we do this lots – screw up – and so the fact that grown ups are admitting this with you is a comforting thing.) Thank goodness everyone seems to believe in forgiveness of sin!
When I was very young I attended a private Christian school, my parents were excluded because they wouldn’t “sign” that they believed every dotted “i” and crossed “t” in the Bible. The clergy from our church- which included my father- were excluded from teaching or ministering there for reasons I still don’t know. I am very grateful for the people I met and the fellowship to this day with some of the people at that school. I am grateful for the experience of it because it gave me, along with my family, and church a basis for Faith. What it also did was give me the desire to make peace between extremes. It saddens me that there is so much division even within Christianity.
There is this part of me that says to myself…perhaps if we all laid out everything, each “denomination” and church, everything that we believe and pulled what is in common with everyone we could come together and celebrate. To focus on division only brings division.
1st Corinthians 1:10-11
I appeal to you brothers in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another so that there may be no divisions among you and that you may be perfectly united in mind and thought. My brothers, some from Chloe’s household have informed me that there are quarrels among you.
From one end of the spectrum to the other, Christianity seems to be finding it’s way back to itself, to oneness. I pray that continues because there are so many things to be thankful for, so many gifts, so many wonders and miracles every day around us.
I have heard those that live in fear say what if we’re all wrong. But truly, what if we’re all right? What if Believing in One God with all your heart, and loving your neighbor as yourself are the whole of the truth and The Commandments the way to live a life that brings joy and contentment, and all the rest of it ways to try to explain those concepts?
Do not divide yourselves over things that are for God to judge. But come together. For whenever 2 or more are gathered…
©Adrienne McLeod 2011