The basic human nature is selfishness. The shortest yet most powerful word that gets us driven, tossed and turned is the word “I”. This “what about me” syndrome costs. But THANK GOD for His abounding and unfailing love that He sent His only begotten Son Jesus to save us, to fill us with Himself, until we get filled to overflow with love that rips the ‘I” out of us and redirects our focus unto Him and to the ones He positions in front of us. Truly, we are only empowered to love because He loved us first.
What does it mean to live entitled?
Hmmm … it could be that when someone does wrong to us, we oblige them to ask for forgiveness from us, otherwise nothing is settled.
It could be that with what we have achieved our position and possession in life, we expect people to bow and submit to us all the time.
It could be that when bumper-to-bumper traffic is in front of us, it makes us entitled to complain against government authorities.
It could be that when our flight is delayed, we utter not so good words making us feel inherently deserving to say it because we think we have the right to. We think that we are entitled to have an on-time flight at all times.
It could be that when we are in relationship, we tend to have these expectations to be treated the very way we WANT to be treated and when it is not achieved we end up fighting.
Everyone has expectations here and there and everyone has experienced these expectations not being fulfilled. But I believe there is only ONE WAY to stop the frustrations that come from failed expectations. It is when our IDENTITY is defined in our HUMILITY to receive the Gift of God, Jesus Christ, into our hearts that fills that one particular VOID in it where only HE can fill. Remember that He is our PORTION. When this Portion that is dedicated and exclusively intended for Him to fill remains void, then we gravitate to forcefully draw from others to fill it to meet our expectations.
When we are secure in Christ, forgiven and made righteous, it graces us to let go and forgive others even if they won’t ask for forgiveness from us. As new creations IN CHRIST, our old things have passed away and all things have become new and this newness in life causes us to have new and living ways. We are now the temple of the Holy Spirit and it is He Who will empower us to bless them. His Word says, “I’m telling you to love your enemies. Let them bring out the best in you, not the worst. When someone gives you a hard time, respond with the energies of prayer, for then you are working out of your true selves, your God-created selves.” (Matthew 5:44 MSG)
I faced some challenges with regards to my telephone line. For the past months, my dial tone was on and off, sometimes for 10 days, sometimes more, sometimes less. I have been calling their hotline service number every now and then due to their intermittent service. A technician would come to fix it and after a couple of days, it’s gone again.
I was kinda tired of their inefficient service yet paid in full every time the bill comes, but then again, what can I do? There have been loads and loads of complains from this company and I believe their crew are suffering from all the screamings and murmurings from their clients, too.
Last week, it happened again. I called up and had to wait for 30 minutes just to talk to an agent only to be cut off when someone picked up the phone. I tried again and my waiting time was held for another 30 minutes. Frustrated as I could be, I put down the phone and opted for their automated answering machine.
After about 5 days, a technician came knocking at my door. He wasn’t very pleasant at all. When I asked him what was going on, he answered rudely and impolitely. Oh yes, I was about to give him a lecture. I almost opened my mouth and said … “Do you even care to treat your customers well? We are the ones paying for your salaries, at least give us some respect and answer us well.” Before I could do it, he was just walking back and forth telling me that my internal telephone line needed to be changed and my concern of not having a dial tone had nothing to do with what’s going on outside my house which is their part to fix. He said that my address was wrong and that he wasn’t supposed to be the one to do it. He went on and on. When he went to the back of my house, I heard something dropped on the floor and there was some banging going on. He wasn’t gracious at all, not a bit.
But God’s compassion hit me. Instead of seeing what I was seeing, He opened my eyes to see further. He made me understand how tired the technician was that it wasn’t his fault either why my dial tone was on and off. I could have spoken those words that I have intended to, but I heard in my spirit, “don’t live entitled”. He graced me to be kind and soft spoken and empowered me to say a BIG THANK YOU for his service and he left satisfied. Ohh boy, how peaceful and joyful I was having bridled my tongue … not by might nor by power, but by the Spirit of God. Self control indeed is a fruit of the Holy Spirit in our lives that makes those around us taste and see that the Lord is good.
When we speak well, we are indirectly blessing someone with our words ADDING value into their very being. But when we do the opposite, we, too, are SUBTRACTING. We are called to season our words with salt that adds flavor when it reaches the ears of the receiver.
In this world, we don’t get to choose how we are to be treated, but the good news is, God has given us the grace to live life that changes how people treat us. We cannot change the people around us, but we can change ourselves not by might nor by power, but by the Holy Spirit. Once changed from the inside out, the atmosphere around us changes. This is how to be the head and not the tail, on top and not underneath. Reigning in life doesn’t mean we win in arguments and disagreements living an entitled life all the time and make people agree with us at all times, but it is when the love of God is demonstrated in and through us, Him reigning and ruling in the throne of our hearts that causes a tremendous effect in our relationship with others.
“Therefore if you have any encouragement from being UNITED WITH CHRIST, if any COMFORT FROM HIS LOVE, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by BEING LIKE-MINDED, HAVING THE SAME LOVE, BEING ONE IN SPIRIT and OF ONE MIND. DO NOTHING OUT OF SELFISH AMBITION or vain conceit. Rather, IN HUMILITY VALUE OTHERS ABOVE YOURSELVES, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.” (Philippians 2:1-4 NIV)
God’s thoughts and ways are higher and He gave us His Spirit to enable, equip and commission us to tap into this new way of living. His ways of saving us is not by sword or spear but the power of His word that guides, corrects and instructs us. The purpose of His instruction is that all believers would be filled with love that comes from a pure heart, a clear conscience, and genuine faith.
We are greatly blessed to bless.
We are highly favored to extend favor.
We are deeply loved to love.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for making us new creations in Christ by the power of the finished work of Jesus at the cross. Thank You, that it is in our intimacy with You where we find security and confidence that enables us to be fruitful where people around us can taste and see that You are good. Thank You for Your Holy Spirit Who is effectually at work in us, energizing and creating in us the power and desire both to will and to work for Your good pleasure, satisfaction and delight that we may do all things without grumbling, faultfinding and complaining but trusting and believing that You Who began a good work in us is faithful to finish it in Jesus’ Name. Amen!