Sunday, October 30, 2016

The Ten Commandments of Civility

Dear Rhonda and Dr. Cheri,
I heard somewhere that if people would just follow the Ten Commandments, regardless of their religious beliefs, our society would be a great one.

I know we can’t have the actual commandments put up in schools, which I think is ridiculous, but something like them would help people, including my own kids, behave better.

My husband thinks our sons should somehow instinctively know better about behavior situations.

How are they supposed to know better if they aren’t taught?

We don’t talk about what’s right or wrong until our son does something wrong. I get to be the bad guy, never my husband.

When I give a consequence, my boys argue with me, talk back to me and complain to their dad who does nothing!

It’s not that they’re really bad kids, but they aren’t considerate of others and not focused on how they can help people.

Basically, they don’t seem to care at all about anyone else. But teachers don’t do anything either. Other parents are just as rude.

I want things to change. But how?

Mom who sides with Moses

Dear Mom,

We agree with your analysis that if we abided by the simple Ten Commandments, we would have a good, caring and respectful culture.

You and your husband need to come together and acknowledge there’s a problem in your family and it’s not the responsibility of teachers, other parents, or your kids to set boundaries, create rules, and demonstrate good behavior—although it is crucial for others in every community to help create a civil society.

Let’s take a look at the Ten Commandments and how they may become the Ten Civil Commandments for any family:

    Have no gods before me = Don’t worship things, people, money, or status … instead focus on caring and helping others.

    Don’t make any graven images = Don’t fall into the trap of making a super-pseudo online image of yourself with accomplishments and awards.

    Don’t take the Lord’s name in vain = Watch the swears! Be modest in dress and attitude.

    Keep the Sabbath Day holy = Take one day out of seven to think of others, do for others, care and share with others.

    Admire your parents = Honor their efforts, esteem and appreciate them … they aren’t perfect but neither are you. (This does not mean you should accept abuse.)

    Don’t kill = Don’t kill anyone’s dignity, beliefs, or spirit because they are different than yours.

    Don’t commit adultery = Wait to have sex, and you’ll save your heart from pain, your body from infections and diseases, and your emotions from damage.

    Don’t steal = Don’t steal ideas, credit, girlfriends or boyfriends.

    Don’t bear false witness = Don’t lie about someone, don’t gossip, and don’t say bad things about others to make you look good.

    Don’t covet = Be grateful. Having something you didn’t earn or receive with honesty is a crime against civility.

Teach your kids the Ten Commandments from the Bible and these Ten Commandments of Civility and you’ll notice positive changes.

Rhonda and Dr. Cheri

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