Entitlement is such an ugly thing that has become all too popular among children as of late. They feel they are owed everything they could ever want “just because”.
I can’t even go to the grocery store without hearing a fit or two from children who were denied candy or something of the sorts. They will scream all the way up and down the aisle until suddenly, mom or dad gives in. Right there, children are learning that if they scream and cry, they can get what they want. And so it begins…
M&M are beginning to learn that hard work pays off. With them getting older, they want to do more things, go more places, and buy more stuff. But, Shane and I were not handed anything growing up and we didn’t want the kids to begin to think that if they beg and plead, they will get what they want.
We had tried a couple of different things; chore calendars, chore lists, verbally telling them what needs to get done, etc. But nothing ever got through to them. We got the famous “I forgot…” or “I didn’t realize you wanted the ENITRE bathroom cleaned…” or “I did do (insert chore here), but I forgot this part and this part and this part…”
The list of excuses was getting extensive and some-what hilarious. However, it didn’t get them out of re-doing the job if it wasn’t done right or even doing it in the first place if it was forgot. What we were really teaching them was work ethic. Let’s face it, once Shane and I are done with them, they enter the working world. If they don’t have good work ethic and integrity, no one will want to have them (or keep them) as an employee.
They really got a shock when we offered (well… I offered and then told the rest of the family later) to pick rock for my dad out on the farm. I forewarned the kids it was A LOT of physical work. To my surprise, both of them got on the hayrack and worked until they couldn’t work anymore.
Then, we come up on this big move. The house needed a lot of work done on the inside before we were able to move in – refinishing floors, painting, cleaning, etc. So, we approached the kids and asked for help – we needed as much as we could get!
They were at the new house every afternoon for the two weeks they were with their mom and then the last week of prep they were with us so they were stuck with it anyway. Then, it was time to move on to the rental house. We needed to pack, clean, re-paint, and patch the lawn. It was a lot that needed to be done in a short amount of time and they really stepped up to make our dream home happen.
Watching them grow in their work ethic and their enthusiasm to help with big projects is a lot like how I view my relationship with Christ. I can be so forgetful when it comes to what I should be doing – praying, reading, discipleship, and being a Godly wife and mother. But when I do any of those, I am so excited to do them to the full extent that I can!
I’ve seen people who feel like God owes them. Whether it be due to someone close to them passing, a battle with a disease, a battle with a handicap, or something else that triggers everyday struggle. They feel that because God has blessed them differently than someone else, He owes them something more than His life that he gave on the cross for full forgiveness of all our sins.
I can’t understand why people would feel like He would owe them more than that. Have I lost someone I loved? Yes. Do I personally know people battling with cancer? Yes. Do I personally know someone battling a physical or mental disability? Yes and yes.
But that doesn’t mean that I’m mad at God for putting these blessings in disguise on people in my life. Are there days I’m saddened about it? Sure. But you can’t go on being mad about something you can’t change; and honestly, there is probably a lesson behind it that only the people fighting these things are aware of. Maybe it’s strengthened their faith, maybe it’s solidified their faith, maybe it’s allowed them to find faith.
If anything, we owe it to Him to continue to spread His great story, to bring others to him.
He has blessed us with His truth, His mercy, and His eternal grace.
“But God, who is rich in mercy, because of his great love that He had for us, made us alive with the Messiah even though we were dead in trespasses. You are saved by grace!” ~ Ephesians 2:4-5 (HCSB)