Entitled To Nothing

18 Sep

“Don’t go around saying the world owes you a living.  The world owes you nothing.  It was here first.”  ~ Mark Twain

And God was here before the world!

There are too many people with a sense of entitlement nowadays.  People who think that they are owed something simply because they exist.  We all know these kinds of people.  Some of them might even be family members or friends.  It is hard to explain to them that they are not super-special and entitled to anything and everything that they desire simply because they exist.

When we embrace an entitled persona, we cannot possibly see the need in another person.  We cannot respond to that need or provide for another.  We cannot because we do not allow ourselves to see anyone as more needy or more special than ourselves.  Jesus did everything that He could to fight that sense of entitlement among His own people.  It is tragically sad to realize that condition has been around that long, isn’t it?  I think the sense of entitlement must be a hard-coded part of our tainted post-fall human nature.

I was a young person when I heard President Kennedy utter his famous quote, “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.”  I did not really understand what he was addressing when he spoke it; but, I remember being instantly moved by the quote. To me, it spoke about a reality of something larger than any one of us, about a common good and a common goal to which we all looked.  In my young mind — and still to this day — the quote does not make any of us less.  It makes all of us more important in the grand scheme of things.  It does so because it opens our eyes to the fact that we all belong to a greater family.

When we can see the need in others and respond to their need, we make ourselves loving members of that family.  As we do, there will be times when they see our need and provide for us in turn.  Mutually caring for one another rather than expecting everything because we think we are the only ones who matter is truly the way to live our lives.

FAITH ACTION:  Be kind and charitable to others today without seeking anything in return.