September 24-25, 2016
Spoiled brats! I don’t hear people today using that phrase as much as I did back in the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s. I guess it’s not very politically correct anymore. Today, we use the term when referring to Miley Cyrus, Justin Bieber, Johnny Manziel, Charlie Sheen or others with plenty of money who make self-destructive decisions. We often think a spoiled brat refers to a child or teen that has a sense of entitlement. Brats believe that all they desire is theirs on demand, that only good things will happen to them, nothing painful will happen, or that if adversity strikes, it will be quickly removed and remedied. These distortions are based on the belief that they deserve good things because of who they are.
It sounds ridiculous and so immature. But notice today how many times others, or even you, act entitled. This includes people who think they and their loved ones should have good health, more money than necessary, no bills, an easy job, the approval of others, acceptance of their ideas, a smooth daily plan, an agenda that works out perfectly with extra time to spare, no traffic or delays, no one using their elliptical, meals made perfectly, the right ice cream left in the freezer, and no one around them ever making mistakes. In addition, every time we make a mistake, we expect others to excuse it, maybe even enjoy it, and have the mistake immediately fixed. Do you see some of yourself in these entitled examples? You’re not alone. We all fall into these traps.
We live in an age of entitlement. We all think we deserve more good stuff. This mindset has led to zillion-dollar national debt, home foreclosures and personal debt at record highs. That’s just the financial damage. The divorce rate is high. Abortions are prevalent and accepted as normal. Addictions and domestic violence are rising. The psychological and spiritual damages exponentially trump the financial losses. We must constantly counteract the barrage of propaganda telling us that we need more and deserve more.
The best way to fight against the lie of deserving more is by learning to see everything from God’s perspective. Let this world become your classroom. Notice all the blessings you take for granted each day. Let His Word become a lamp to your feet and a light for your path. It’s almost impossible to have a thankful heart while constantly demanding more. A way to reverse this is to saturate your mind with Scripture. Read it, think about it and memorize portions of it. This will allow you to see things from God’s perspective. You will then be thankful for everything and realize you are entitled to nothing.
Today, make a list of all the blessings you do have in your life. To help spur thought, think of those who are disabled, people in third-world situations, the oppressed and those who have gone through serious events and losses. Then list why you deserve—actually deserve—your positive blessings. Give thanks for all your blessings, regardless of how small they are. Allow God’s word to cut deep into your entitlement. Remember that His word is sharper than any double-edged sword. Let Him use it to do spiritual surgery on the thoughts and attitudes of your mind and soul. Whether you have an attitude of entitlement or you exude one of thankfulness — it’s your decision, so choose well.
Dear Father God, I ask that You set me free from the prison of ingratitude that I created for myself. Release me from this prison so that I may enjoy the pleasures of a thankful heart. You allowed Your Son to enter this world as an infant, knowing the price He would have to pay. Thank You, Father. I understand why You sent Your Son Jesus to us. You sent Him “to open the eyes of the blind, to free captives from prison and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness.” Open my eyes, Lord. I pray that Your Holy Spirit fill me with the gift to understand and spread You Holy Word. Give me a perspective-lift today. Help me to see things from Your perspective. I pray to You with confidence in the name of the One who can provide my every need, Jesus Christ. And all God’s children say AMEN!
“To open the eyes of the blind, to free captives from prison and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness.” Isaiah 42:7
“Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.” Psalm 119:105
“For the Word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to divide soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” Hebrews 4:12