Did anyone ever grow up hearing a phrase like “my house, my rules”, or “because I said so, and that’s the only reason you need!”? I heard that second one a few (thousand) times, and though I was sure I’d never utter these as a parent, I have. Sometimes my daughter just isn’t ready to hear or understand why I know something isn’t in her best interest.

I love how our Heavenly Father uses life to teach us about His character.

Nothing has taught me more about His love than parenting my child through toddler and teen years. Does my love for my child diminish when she disobeys or behaves in unlovable ways?

Nope. Not even a smidgen.

Am I okay with bad behavior and disobedience just because I love her?  No. If anything, I’m less okay with it because I know nothing good can come from it.

I desire to teach my daughter character based on godly principles.

I’m so thankful scripture is full of direction on how to do that. Much like our Heavenly Father has guidelines for how His children are supposed to live, I have some for my child. Because of those guidelines, from time to time, I hear phrases like, “that’s not fair! Everyone else gets to, so why can’t I?!?!”   My answer usually goes something like this:

“Everyone else isn’t my child. You are mine, and because I love you and want good things for you. You might not see it now, but that won’t benefit you in the long run. It might actually do you harm!”

Isn’t that like the Father’s love for us?

I can’t help but think of this as I read through the Torah where Yahweh gives His children instructions for how He expects us to live. He calls us to be set apart, peculiar even. The fact that He has guidelines for His children to live is repeated often in scripture.

Here are a few examples:

Deuteronomy 26:18-19 And the LORD has declared today that you are a people for his treasured possession, as he has promised you, and that you are to keep all his commandments, and that he will set you in praise and in fame and in honor high above all nations that he has made, and that you shall be a people holy to the LORD your God, as he promised.”

Malachi 3:17-18 They shall be mine, says the LORD of hosts, in the day when I make up my treasured possession, and I will spare them as a man spares his son who serves him. Then once more you shall see the distinction between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve him.

Titus 2:11-14 For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.

1 Peter 2:9-10 But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.

When we study scripture, we see beautiful patterns woven throughout the pages including expected behavior for life in the Father’s family. He’s very consistent- He does not change! (Mal 3:6, Heb 13:8)

Why does He have family rules?

Because He KNOWS what’s best for us! The Creator of the universe has a plan in place for our good, to keep us from harm. We are His children. He loves us, and because He does, the Bible tells us in great detail what we should and shouldn’t do. 

Will we always understand His reasons?

Probably not. I know there have been times in my life that, like a child who thinks the rules aren’t fair, I’ve wanted to do things my own way or go with the crowd. I’m thankful that my Heavenly Father loves me enough to remind me WHO I belong to!

Jesus said in John 14:2, “In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?”

I know I want to be part of my Heavenly Father’s family.

It’s His house, and scripture gives us a clear picture of His family rules. Because He’s God and He said so, is the only reason I need to obey. Siblings, let’s try our best to honor our Father by being faithful, obedient children! It will be for our good and His glory!

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About the Seeking Scripture Team: We are a group of believers from all walks of the faith, saved by grace alone through faith in our Messiah. While we are of one accord in many things, we are all works in progress and lifelong learners. Therefore the opinions of one may not always represent the opinions of all.

Christy Howlett
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