Entitlement: belief that one is deserving of or entitled to certain privileges
For a few months now, the subject of entitlement has been wandering around slowly in my head. The subject keeps making appearances in my psyche, and I've been trying to put my random thoughts into some sort of order. On Sunday, I heard Joanne Kraft discuss entitlement and how the attitude robs our children and strangles the Holy Spirit. I keep turning this over in my mind, and it seems to me that entitlement seems to go hand-in-hand with not wanting to wait and a lack of trust.
I ended my last blog post by saying, "it seems, the enemy has done more to harm us through this suburban-lifestyle-entitlement-stuff than we can imagine. I'm pondering all this, but I think it has to do with waiting. Waiting for stuff. Waiting on the Lord. Waiting."
We are always in a hurry, but entitlement is the "belief that one is deserving of or entitled to certain privileges" -- not only that we are entitled to privileges and things, but we are entitled to them now, not later. We expect what we want when we want it. I think texting and e-mailing and googling has added fuel to this fire of needing, wanting, demanding everything now and fast. It used to be that if someone called you and you called back in a day or two, that was ok. Now, we're like, "She didn't call me back for 2 days!" We expect that we will get a text response immediately, or we're being ignored. We expect stuff now. Right now. Life seems urgent, hurried.
I was going to say that this attitude of entitlement is a kid-thing, but I think it's a people-thing. No one wants to wait anymore for anything ever. How does entitlement strangle the Holy Spirit?
God doesn't work on our time table. He's not in a hurry. The more time goes on and technology makes life "easier," the harder it is to wait for anything, and waiting on the Lord and His timing becomes harder and harder and harder. I think, when we don't have time to wait, we don't have time to trust, and then we strangle the Holy Spirit because He doesn't work as fast as we want Him to. He's not fast enough, and we try to speed things up and get ourselves in all sorts of trouble.
Therefore, when God isn't fast enough, we lose trust. If we believe we are entitled to things when we want them, then we get angry at God if we don't get them when we are ready to have them. We don't trust that He knows what He is doing and that waiting might be good for us -- or that thing or job or relationship might not be what we really need at all. Eventually, the entitlement attitude in our kids will translate to a lack of trust in the Lord as they become adults.
So maybe a lesson we need to teach our children in this society is how to wait. How to slow down. Maybe we all need to practice waiting.
Noah waited for rain while people mocked him every day.
Abraham waited for his son, Isaac.
David waited to be king on God's timetable while Saul tried to kill him over and over.
Jesus waited to begin His ministry until 30 years old.
Paul was prohibited to preach the word in Asia even though he really wanted to.
Isaiah 40:31 but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.
How do we teach our kids to wait? How do we teach them to trust in the Lord NOW for the little things so they are not afraid of waiting for big things later?