Entitlement

Today’s society is bombarded with many slogans that portray us to be “deserving” of something. Such self-focused messages are:

            “You deserve a break today…” used by McDonald’s

            “You owe it to yourself…” used by cruise lines

            “Treat yourself to take the break you deserve” used by Hilton HHonors

In the dynamics of families and relationships, how many times have you graciously gave a gift and never received a “thank you” of any kind? How often have you heard the stories of parents passing away, and the children fought over the estate and money? If a sibling or parent is near their deathbed, do they deserve to be treated with respect if they never reciprocated love to family members in a state of healthiness? What if a husband and wife purchase a home with their hard-earned money – should their children feel entitled to the parent’s assets?

Within the business world, employees arrive late and perform their duties with little ambition. They demand pay raises and better benefits. Are they really deserving of it? Or, a parent scrapes and works hard to grow a business, and their grown children now believe they’re entitled to run it when the parent is deceased.

Churches also run into the same dilemmas when the congregation feels entitled to receive answers from their pastors or to hold positions within the house of worship. And, while I walk down the path of religious connotations, many believers feel deserving of God’s blessings. Speaking of this, do you know why much of humanity walks away from God and stops believing in Him? They prayed for an answer they wanted to hear and didn’t receive it. He was a means to get what they felt entitled to in life! Ironically, I believe our church leaders are responsible for this incorrect train of thought. They stand on the pulpit and preach God will meet all our needs and give them their desires if they pledge their soul to Jesus. The fact is our sin separates us from the Lord.

Entitlement is a dangerous walk in life – it’s Godlessness. Let me be frank here – God, parents, and employers owe us nothing. God blesses us with things because He wants to – an unconditional love of grace. A selfish demand for His generosity will reap no benefits. It’s that simple!

Jesus’ ministry spoke of loving others with a grateful heart. This includes treating each other with respect, even amidst our differences. The well-being of gratitude promotes healthy relationships, both in our walk with the Lord and relationships with others.

In the subject of parenting, fewer children today respect their elders. They ignore the recognition parents deserve for years of hard work and dedication to their families because they live in the “gimme, gimme” world. These generations are gifted with their heart’s desires, and they expect it from the parents. Thus, the slogans I mentioned at the beginning of the message above, come into play. As the children grow older, they feel entitled to life. Little do we know, it promotes laziness, ungratefulness, and the subject of this blog – entitlement. What are we teaching our children and others?

So, how can we live a life feeling less entitled to things and people?

•          Humbly give thanks to God for all we receive. “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18

•          Remember the grace of God, for Jesus died on the cross for our sins. We do not deserve to be treated with graciousness for our sinful attitudes, but the Lord’s love and grace reaches out to us, anyway. “At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy.” Titus 3:3-5

•          Set your mind on eternity with the Lord and not on this world. Money and physical possessions mean nothing, for they cannot be taken with you to heaven. “But, as it is written, what no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him…” 1 Corinthians 2:9

•          Continuously pray for discernment of entitlement. Why do I feel entitled, and how can I change this train of thought?

In summary of today’s message, expect little, receive with a grateful heart, and always give thanks. Give God the glory for your unexpected blessings!

Written by Anne Bicks, Editor and Marketing of Bicks Books LLC


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Some Things are Better Left Unsaid

Praising others appears to be a thing of the past. Everyone has an opinion, or so it seems, so I return to biblical days. Soldiers and others mocked Jesus’ words, and some people were bold enough to discredit Him. He was beaten with fists, blindfolded and taunted; but, not once did He turn His back on the hateful nor retaliated with scornful actions.

Some things are well said… but some things are better left unsaid.

Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” Romans 12:19

Clichés are abundant, but at times, not responding speaks louder than words. Rebuttals hurt, and damages integrity. Many times spoken words in the heat of a moment are later wished they were unheard by the recipient. I ask, did you pray before you spoke those demeaning comments? Most people must not, for their spew would not roll off the lips so easy. Is it human nature to bow down to such shallow depths for it sure leaves little room for two to compromise?

Some things are better left unsaid.

“Whoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.” Proverbs 21:23

Christ tried to make listeners comprehend, but when preaching fell short, a better method took front stage. God, in accordance, knew His actions would speak louder than words. We will learn a lot if we just listen and accept the Lord’s advice to love each other.

Some things are better left unsaid.

“Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.” 1 John 3:18

Dishonesty runs rampant in society, and it’s not only individuals but politics and businesses too. We are taught differently as children, yet it free flows into adulthood. The Bible warns us of a tragic fall when we follow the crooked paths of life. Curb the tongue as our gracious Lord taught us.

Some things are better left unsaid.

“Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.” Proverbs 18:21

Those who scramble to speak like a double-edged sword will find their life spinning in circles. They shall never experience the Christ of this world without repentance. Smile instead… let your derogatory words and thoughts be a secret only unto the Lord. Be gracious unto God and let others be a witness to His love which lives inside of you. You are the Lord’s temple.

Leave some things better left unsaid.


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Great lessons from a humble man

Is your name Joseph? If it is, tell us how and why you took that name.

Do you know someone who is called Joseph? Please forward this post to him so that he may tell us why he bears this name.

The Catholic World celebrates the feast of Joseph, the husband of Mary and foster-father of Jesus on the 19th of March every year.

It’s always a big event.

It’s amazing how this man who never said anything all his life is so highly respected in the world and said to have done so much for humanity.

He is, in fact, a role model to millions of people. Millions the world over bear his name. Millions of institutions in the world have been named after him.

Would someone kindly tell the world why this man is considered by so many as so great. I am told he had many virtues and that every letter of his name – Joseph – stands for a virtue.

Please, throw some light on this. What does this man teach the world?

Your name means much

I would like you to look at your name. It means much depending on how you look at it.

Let us look at what the letters of your name stand for. Every letter of your name stands for a virtue and all the virtues in your name combine to form the character that God wants you to have.

Did you know that?

Take my name Romanus.

R = righteous

O = obedience

M – meek

A – admirable

N = Nice

U = understanding

S = simple.

God’s plan for me is to be simple, understanding, nice, admirable, meek, obedient and righteous.

Everyday, I need to ask myself if I am living up to this plan for my life?

If I make an effort daily to live up to my name, God will be pleased with me.That is same for you.

What virtues do the letters of your name stand for?

Is it a worthwhile exercise to encourage people to know the virtues that the letters of their names stand for and make an effort to live those virtues?