Follow rules; or break a few?

Exodus 20:1-17;  Deuteronomy 5:5-21     The Ten Commandments     You shall have no other Gods before me; You shalt not make yourself any graven image/idol;  You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain; Remember the Sabbath day and keep it Holy;  Honor your father and mother;  You shall not kill;  You shall not commit adultery;  You shall not steal; You shall not bear false witness (lie); You shall not covet (want, wish for, be envious of another’s things)

Exodus 20:2, 3    To know there is a God; To have no other gods

Deuteronomy 6:4, 5     To know that He is one; To love Him

Deuteronomy 6:7     Teach the Torah to your children

Deuteronomy 6:16     Not to test the prophet

Deuteronomy 10:19     To love converts.

Deuteronomy 10:20     To fear Him.  To be with those who only worship Him

Deuteronomy 12:4     To worship Him as He has ordered and not destroy holy objects

Deuteronomy 18:15     To listen to the true prophet

Deuteronomy 28:9     To emulate His ways

Leviticus 19:16      Not to slander

Leviticus 19:17     Not to hate your brother in your heart;  To reprove your brother when necessary; Not to embarrass others

Leviticus 19:18     Not to take revenge; Not to bear a grudge

Hebrews 10:16-17     “This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the LORD: I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds I will write them,” then He adds, “Their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.”




Do you think rules are for you?  What do you do if a piece of paper flies out of your grocery cart and ends up as trash in the parking lot?  What if the sign reads, ‘stay off the dunes;’ is it then okay to let your dog or dogs run up and down and tumble around sliding down the sand?  How about picking up your dog’s waste?  Do you do it?  I certainly have witnessed a number of owners who have not done it on my little street!   I will certainly confess that mine has gone, I realized I had no bags with me—the container was empty—but I hurried home, grabbed my bag, and hastened back to pick it up.  And I feel mortified to have to run home, get a bag and run back, but I CANNOT leave that for others.  It’s very poor pet owner manners.  Shame on anyone who walks their pet on a public street and does not clean up after it.  I cannot complain about others not picking it up if I don’t consistently pick it up.  It makes me a crazy person to see people assuming the sign/rule/law is not for them.   

I try to follow the rules—most of the time.  Do I push the speed limit?  Yes, but USUALLY not more than 7 miles over.  Is it still speeding?  Yes, it is.  For years I had a concealed carry permit, but I carried one day, and then was fearful that my bag could be stolen with my weapon in it; my car would be stolen with my weapon under the seat; what if my weapon was used in a crime, and God forbid a murder?  I took my weapons to my storage unit and locked them up and only take them out for target practice.  I was confident that I was God’s child and IF someone grabbed and assaulted me, God had this.  Even if it was my time to go, I knew where I was going.  My only prayer then was that God would reassure my kids my new body was in heaven, lounging in my ‘room prepared for me.’

The rules apply to me.   I try hard not to push the boundaries and keep doing what I am supposed to do.  Am I perfect?  PLEASE, let me tell you just how very imperfect I am and can be!   

It puzzles and sometimes amazes me the blatancy of some who disregard rules.   Many of us living on the beach plant sea oats and tend them, and certainly tape off the areas as a sign to renters and others to NOT walk across them.  They are new plants and need to get established in order to protect the homes along the beach.  But there are some who just feel they do NOT need to walk to a beach access, they can climb the dunes in front of their rental and with cooler and chair in hand, start their beach day. 

I was here in 2018, and in front of my house the dunes protected us—I am second row.  But my neighbors had worked and planted the vegetation for years.  We were protected, but as you went from 11th Ave north, there were NO dunes.  You walked the road and the ocean was a straight shot, seemingly not more than 150 feet away—nothing to separate the road from the ocean.  There were no beach accesses, you walked straight from the road to the beach.  There was NOTHING to protect from the ocean coming all the way through.

I walk that most mornings and am amazed.  A couple years ago, during the pandemic, in 2021, my friend and I were walking, and I said how much everything had changed since Sept 2018.  At the time it was February of 2021, only 2 ½ years following the worst hurricane I had been through.  We had dunes back and could no longer see the ocean except under some of the houses on stilts, but there were dunes to protect the view.  And here we were living in a world that seemed full of fear, and we walked each morning, got together with other neighbors frequently outside in the evenings, and how blessed we were to be here.  It did not feel so scary, so overwhelming.  Many of the neighbors, including this gal feared the virus and the possibility of getting it, but still appreciated waking each morning, enjoying the beauty of the area, and certainly enjoyed spending time socializing with other neighbors and friends.  We all felt lucky to be here.  I reminded all the neighbors each time we were together, we needed to be thankful we were here, living in this environment, being able to be outside often and still get together, maintaining distance, but still having camaraderie.

Anyway, I tend to follow the rules.  Sometimes, I don’t like them, think they’re silly or seem to be favoring a certain group, but I still follow them.  Maybe partly from fear of punishment, but the other part is that I believe rules are made for the greater good—not always my good, but for the greater good.  I may feel they are impeding my right to something.  But I still tend to follow; I will delve and find out others feel about the new rule, but I may be shown my thoughts and feelings are all about me, and there is good substantiation, so I try to acclimate my brain accordingly. 

The Jewish people had 613 laws (mitzvot in Hebrew) under the old covenant, that’s the Ten Commandments and 603 others, some similar to the commandments, some totally different—foods that were considered clean and unclean, times of life when one was considered clean and unclean, and so on.  God knew what He was doing, planking me down during this time and not then.  I would be forever responsible for animal deaths and would hate that.   Which, I am sure was the point God WANTED to drive into each that something innocent was paying their price!  

I still am selfish and judgmental and sometimes think my thoughts and rules are what should be, but that too has changed some over the years.  I have more tolerance, seemingly can weigh situations with a broader view.   That is directly related to my walk with God.  He has shown me how to be tolerant, gentler, patient, kind and loving, and “haha”, more law-abiding.  (Although, thank You, I am not living in the desert or shortly after—I could never be obedient to all the rules set up originally.  I am so thankful to live under the new Covenant.  Thank You, Jesus.)  God’s rules are to protect us–from ourselves.  We are a sinful, selfish peple and because of our WANTS and DESIRES, we tend to go about that goal disregarding how we succeed.  That is against God’s rules.  His rules, if followed, will lead us to abundance.  If we disobey and continually sin, we walk a more difficult path.  

Truly, Lord, I am thankful.  I know You have blessed me abundantly and repeatedly.  I can see my progress but it must seem so very SLOW to You, but You patiently continue to guide and lead my steps, and I thank You for all you have done for me and ‘mybellaviews.’