Entitlement is 1) the condition of having the right to have, do, or get something 2) the feeling or belief that you deserve to be given something.
Entitlement is the Opposite of Gratitude.
It is a greedy, self-serving “I deserve it” attitude about life.
What do you and I deserve?
I turned to the internet, where I found…
1. You deserve love.
2. You deserve happiness.
3. You deserve peace and comfort.
4. You deserve better.
5. You deserve a house, a car, and stuff.
6. You deserve to do what you want.
Entitlement says, “I want what I want, and I want it now.”
I deserve what I want.
There is a Problem with Entitlement
The only guaranteed outcome from an entitled way of thinking is dissatisfaction and unhappiness.
Read that again…
[Tweet “The only guaranteed outcome from an entitled way of thinking is dissatisfaction and unhappiness.”]
As long as you and I fixate on what we think we deserve, we will never enjoy the satisfaction and happiness we really need or want.
So let’s take a minute to see what we really deserve…
What does the Bible say we really deserve?
And Jesus said, “The things that come out of people are the things that make them unclean. All these evil things begin inside people, in the mind: evil thoughts, sexual sins, stealing, murder, adultery, greed, evil actions, lying, doing sinful things, jealousy, speaking evil of others, pride, and foolish living. Mark 7:20–23
For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23
Remember, it is sin to know what you ought to do and then not do it. James 4:17
Everyone has sinned and fallen short of God’s glorious standard, and all need to be made right with God by His grace, which is a free gift. They need to be made free from sin through Jesus Christ. Romans 3:23
Thank God, He Doesn’t Give Us What We Deserve!
But if we confess our sins, He will forgive our sins, because we can trust God to do what is right. He will cleanse us from all the wrongs we have done. 1 John 1:9
Sin once used death to rule us, but God gave people more of His grace so that grace could rule by making people right with Him. And this brings life forever through Jesus Christ our Lord. Romans 5:21
For God saved us and called us to live a holy life. He did this, not because we deserved it, but because that was His plan from before the beginning of time—to show us His grace through Christ Jesus. 2 Timothy 1:9
Aren’t you thankful God doesn’t give us what we really deserve?
It’s time to kick entitlement to the curb.
What is the answer to getting over entitlement?
Complete and humble gratitude offered to the One who has given us more that we could ever ask or imagine.
Christ’s love is greater than anyone can ever know, but I pray that you will be able to know that love. Then you can be filled with the fullness of God. With God’s power working in us, God can do much, much more than anything we can ask or imagine. To Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus for all time, forever and ever. Amen. Ephesians 3:19-21
[Tweet ““Grace destroys entitlement.” ~Justin Buzzard”]
It’s time to spend ourselves on others in response to God’s gift of grace.
The best way to get over living with a greedy, self-serving “I deserve it” entitlement attitude is to stop thinking about ourselves and start caring for others.
And I [Paul] have been a constant example of how you can help those in need by working hard. You should remember the words of the Lord Jesus: “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” Acts 20:35
“If you do away with the yoke of oppression, with the pointing finger and malicious talk, and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday. The Lord will guide you always; He will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame.” Isaiah 58:9b-11a
Gratitude is thankfulness in action.
Remember this quote…
Thankfulness is the beginning of gratitude. Gratitude is the completion of thankfulness. Thankfulness may consist merely of words. Gratitude is shown in acts.” –Henri Frederic Amiel
The Blessing of Gratitude in Action
Gratitude leads to contentment and happiness.
And don’t you want to be content and happy?
Have you ever met anyone with an entitlement attitude who’s happy?
No? Me either.
It’s impossible to be happy when we are focused on ourselves.
The marketing world wants us to believe we will be happy if we get what we want but the truth is that happiness is found in being thankful for what we have.
And in Jesus, we have everything we need.
My God will use His wonderful riches in Christ Jesus to give you everything you need. Glory to our God and Father forever and ever! Amen. Philippians 4:19–20
Because of Jesus, we can believe every promise God made.
For Jesus Christ, the Son of God, does not waver between “Yes” and “No.” He is God’s ultimate “Yes,” He always does what He says. For all of God’s promises have been fulfilled in Christ with a resounding “Yes!” And through Christ, our “Amen” (which means “Yes”) ascends to God for His glory. 2 Corinthians 1:19a,20
That’s reason enough to be grateful.
If you want to be happy – kick entitlement to the curb.
If you want your children to be happy – kick entitlement to the curb.
People who believe they are entitled . . . compare and focus on what they’re lacking.
Appreciative people are happy; they see the beauty in life while others miss it. ~Richard Carlson
May we kick entitlement to the curb by living with gratitude every day.
- Thank God for giving you everything you need in Christ Jesus.
- Thank God for graciously meeting your physical, emotional, and spiritual needs.
- Thank God by spending yourself by caring for the needs of those less fortunate. (And for most of us, there is always someone less fortunate.)
One last quote to think about…
“When we replace a sense of service and gratitude with a sense of entitlement and expectation, we quickly see the demise of our relationships, society, and economy.” ~Steve Maraboli
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