• Michelle Burkhardt

10 Second Spiritual-Rule



Whether you are a parent with a crying child who just watched his lollipop hit the ground, or you yourself clumsily dropped a piece of chocolate on the kitchen floor, we all are familiar with the age-old concept of the “5 second-rule”. My question to you is, “Did you give the child the lollipop back after blowing on it? Did you grab the chocolate in under 5 seconds, brush it off, and then, pop it into your mouth?” Since this was a saying that I definitely used while raising my 4 boys, I decided to research the history of the 5 second-rule. Interestingly, it has been connected to both Genghis Khan and Julia Child (clearly, two totally different types of people). Khan used it (called, “Kahn Rule”) in a more authoritative manner allowing food to stay on the floor until he said it could be picked up to eat. While, Julia Child after dropping a potato pancake coined, “if you’re alone in the kitchen. Who is going to see?”

Regardless of who started it, the notion is based on the fact that a person has a set amount of time before bacteria can “jump on” the food and ruin it by making you sick.


Because I am always looking for Biblical connections to apply to my everyday life experiences, when I recently read a devotional from the YouVersion Bible App, (I cannot remember the author) about a “10 second-rule” with a spiritual concept, my soul leaped at an opportunity for personal growth. To explain, the Holy Spirit often communicates that He wants me to do something. This something may include: sending someone a card; calling a friend who may need a listening ear; making a meal/special treat for a neighbor; or giving a gift without having a specific occasion. Even though I clearly hear Him, and I want to follow His prompts, I find more often that I forget because life-comes-at-me-fast, and I let too much time elapse. Previously, I wrote a blog (Three Times a Charm) about how I struggle to initially listen to His instruction, thus, this concept of obeying within 10 seconds, immediately sounded like a good way to overcome my spiritual procrastination.


Humorously, soon after my promise to God to not waste a single second (or 9 of them 😊) the next time I sensed his subliminal message to bless someone was while I was taking a shower! Our God is the Creator of all things—including jokes! Although I chuckled, I knew He was testing me to see if I would still make the first step towards obedience. It did not mean that I had to hop out of the shower and accomplish the task within 10 seconds; yet, I do believe it was important for me to start the process as soon as possible. Since forgetting is one of my issues, I am now reaching for my phone to type it into my Reminder App. Plus, I find myself now asking Alexa or Siri to remind me (Don’t you just love technology!) until the task is complete.


Even though I am guilty of using the 5 second-rule in the past, (specifically, I can remember a pacifier and a cranky 1-year-old being involved), I am not quite a fan of it anymore. Since, I work in the hospital and my knowledge of nasty germs has increased, the thought of picking anything off the floor sends chills down my spine. Nevertheless, I intend on being a follower of this new 10 Second Spiritual-rule which will help me extend God’s blessings on HIS Time and not mine.


https://www.sciencefriday.com/articles/the-origin-of-the-five-second-rule/

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