Why So Many Rules? A Family Devotional


Moms and Dads, share this easy-to-understand illustration with your kids to help them understand why rules exist for our protection.

Rules aren't supposed to make you miserable. They're for your protection.

Bible Reading: Exodus 20:1-17. 

And the Lord our God commanded us to obey all these laws and to fear him for our own prosperity and well-being, as is now the case (Deuteronomy 6:24).

Jason sat beside the swimming pool on the first day of summer camp. The head lifeguard explained the pool rules.

“No running in the pool area,” he declared. “No diving into the shallow end. Only one person at a time is allowed on the diving board.”

Jason turned to the other boys in his cabin. “This is worse than home,” he whispered. “Do this, don’t do that!”

“When you hear one blast on the whistle,” the lifeguard continued, holding the whistle that hung from a cord around his neck, “it means I need your attention, probably to get you to stop what you’re doing.”

“This is the pits,” Jason said, a little louder.

“Two blasts on the whistle,” the lifeguard said, “means everyone stop swimming, look my way, and listen to me.”

“We won’t be able to have any fun!” Jason said.

“And three blasts on the whistle,” the lifeguard concluded, “means everybody out of the pool. Any questions?”

“Yeah,” Jason said. “Why so many rules? I’m sick of rules! Why can’t we just have fun?”

“The rules aren’t supposed to make you miserable,” the lifeguard said. “They’re for your protection. ‘No running in the pool area’—that’s to keep you from falling on the concrete and slicing your knee open. ‘No diving in the shallow end’—that’s to prevent you from hitting your head on the bottom of the pool and maybe paralyzing or even killing yourself. If you follow the rules, you’ll be much better off. If you don’t follow them, you’ll end up getting hurt.”

The lifeguard faced the rest of the campers. “Any other questions?” “Yeah,” Jason said, raising his hand this time. The lifeguard nodded to him. “When do we start swimming?”

The lifeguard smiled. “As soon as you finish talking!”

TO DISCUSS: Why do you think God gave so many rules? Can you think of ways his commands protect you?

TO PRAY: “Lord, help us to obey your rules, even if we think they’re unfair.”

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