“Because I deserve it.” “That person should have been nicer.” “I am so much better than him/her/them.”
We live in a generation that embodies Burger King’s motto “have it your way”. We expect our server to be faster, everybody to drive as the same speed as us, and to get that promotion. We have grown up with technology that was constantly evolving and a consumerism that we expected to please us. When something does not go our way we get annoyed or even downright angry. The internet is full of people trying to prove themselves to others. Isn’t that what social media is really all about? We take pride in the fact that we fight for things and stand up for what we believe in but when it really comes down to it are we really willing to give up any aspect of our comfortable way of living?
I get so stuck in this way of thinking. Yes, I call myself a Christian but I am one of the most entitled people I know. Sometimes I forgot the world does not revolve around me. As I write this I cringe at the thought of someone reading it and I want to redeem myself by writing all the good things I do but to be completely honest I live my life with entitlement. I think that I should be treated a certain way and when I do not I get frustrated or angry.
One of my favorite quotes is “entitlement is when I get the false impression that I deserve more than I really deserve…which is a cross.” It is currently sitting on the background of my phone as a reminder to live my life out in grace towards others because I have been gifted with the biggest act of grace there ever was, Jesus dying on the cross for my sins. Once I sit in this truth and remember this my whole attitude changes. I remember that everything I have is a blessing from a God and has nothing to do with what I did.
1 Peter 3:8-9 “Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind. Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing”
I can honestly say entitlement is something I have personally been working on over the years. One of the experiences I went through truly humbled me and opened my eyes to self entitlement. For example, I was a hostess at a high end restaurant for a little while after I graduated college and got yelled at a lot by my manager and customers. I thought it was crazy how people would get in my face and yell at me for waiting too long which was something I had no control over.
That’s when it hit me that I really need to work on treating everyone with respect and love. I need to first focus on how I treat people before expecting to be treated a certain way. For instance, one of the most popular Bible quotes is Luke 6:31 “Do to others as you would have them do to you.” I’ve read over this verse a million of times, but once you start living that way it will change your life and the way you interact with people. It may seem so simple, but even the smallest acts of kindness can complete change someone’s day around and that’s truly what we are here for. Sharing the love of Jesus through our daily lives.