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Two Awesome Rules for Your Home No Matter Who You Are or What You Believe

Every home has rules. Even the homes without rules have rules. (‘No rules’ is a rule!)

two killerSome are spoken, like ‘Put the toilet seat down.’ And some are unspoken, like ‘Don’t talk to dad until he’s had his first coffee.’

I realize it’s not popular to talk about rules. But what I’ve noticed is that people don’t seem to like rules until someone breaks one of the ones they value.

Like when someone steals your phone, flirts with your partner/spouse, or blows out your birthday candles. In these situations, the rules in question are don’t steal people’s things, be monogamous, and don’t blow out birthday candles that are the sole right of the birthdee!

When it comes down to it, healthy rules help a community run in a healthy way. In the same way, healthy rules help a home run in a healthy way.

Recently, I stumbled upon two rules I think can be universally applied to all homes.

They’re based on the life of Jesus, and they work no matter who you are, no matter how many of you there are, no matter what age you are, and no matter what your beliefs are.

Actually, if you’re an evil zombie these won’t work for you. But if you’re an evil zombie I’m guessing you have other problems.

At the start of John’s Gospel, we read this: “We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” A part of what John is saying is that Jesus came to earth “full of grace and truth.”

Grace means generosity you don’t deserve. Think of it like this. You treat the cashier rudely. Then you realize you don’t have enough money for your purchase. But she pays for your items out of her own pocket despite your bonehead attitude. That’s generosity you don’t deserve. That’s grace.

Truth is… well, truth. It’s the unchanging wisdom of God.

In his teaching series called If, Mark Batterson explains that verse like this: “Grace means I’ll love you no matter what. Truth means I’ll be honest with you no matter what.”

So here’s how to word grace and truth as rules for your home no matter who you are, no matter how many of you there are, no matter how old you are, and no matter what your beliefs are.

  • In our home we are honest with each other no matter what.
  • In our home we love each other no matter what.

Honesty is increasingly endangered in a culture of spin, even in families. But when the home is a place where we can ask real questions, express ourselves, and keep each other accountable, I think it honours God.

And that includes every conversation… whether it be about sex, Santa or a Saviour.

Love is also increasingly endangered in a culture of competition.

  • When one of us doesn’t make the basketball team… we’ll love each other no matter what.
  • When one of us loses a job or fails the bio midterm… we’ll love each other no matter what.
  • When we profoundly disagree about difficult topics… we’ll love each other no matter what.
  • When a bad decision at a late-night party comes back to haunt one of us… we’ll love each other no matter what.
  • When we don’t feel appreciated… we’ll still love each other no matter what.

I’m exceedingly convinced that in our homes we need to make sure the people who matter to God know how much they matter to us.

Grace and truth. Who can argue with that? Well, maybe an evil zombie. But we’ve already addressed that.

Here they are one last time:

  • In our home we are honest with each other no matter what.
  • In our home we love each other no matter what.

The great writer Leo Tolstoy said that “Everybody thinks of changing humanity but nobody thinks of changing himself.” So when you prioritize grace and truth in your home and in your own heart, not only are you changing yourself first, but you are exporting something grande from the heart of God into a hurting world who needs your help.

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