Saturday, March 15, 2014

An entitlement mentality with God ...

You cannot complain and be grateful at the same time. But some people sure are giving it a try!

This is a behavior I've noticed, and you've likely seen a lot of it as well. Someone has, in their prayers, asked God for something, and God has decided to answer their prayers and give them exactly what they asked for. However, the getting of the answered prayer takes a process, and that's when we hear the grumbling as the person complains about what they have to experience to get their prayer answered while simultaneously claiming they're grateful for God blessing them.

Hmmm ...

Folks, when you're in the act of complaining, that action overrides any words suggesting gratitude. You cannot complain and be grateful at the same time!

Many people have a pattern of this hypocritical behavior of claiming gratitude while complaining or moaning about the process. Such behavior speaks volumes about how they really view God, and what they really want: an effortless, trouble-free, but blessed life.

An additional layer of hypocrisy to this is, you will often find many of these people complaining about how there is such an entitlement attitude in our culture!

This grumbling behavior isn't something God takes lightly. In fact, it is so serious that we find the Apostle Paul shining a bright light on the subject. We read about Moses leading a grumbling people out of slavery in Egypt toward a land God promised them, and they griped all the way. They wanted the blessing, but not the experience of what it took for God to bring about the blessing. Yet, all along God was providing and caring for the people. That did not stop their grumbling. Paul tells us we need to look at their story and learn some significant lessons from it ...

"I don't want you to forget, dear brothers and sisters, about our ancestors in the wilderness long ago. All of them were guided by a cloud that moved ahead of them, and all of them walked through the sea on dry ground. In the cloud and in the sea, all of them were baptized as followers of Moses. All of them ate the same spiritual food, and all of them drank the same spiritual water. For they drank from the spiritual rock that traveled with them, and that rock was Christ. Yet God was not pleased with most of them, and their bodies were scattered in the wilderness. These things happened as a warning to us, so that we would not crave evil things as they did, or worship idols as some of them did. As the scriptures say, 'The people celebrated with feasting and drinking, and they indulged in pagan revelry.' And we must not engage in sexual immorality as some of them did, causing 23,000 of them to die in one day. Nor should we put Christ to the test, as some of them did and then died from snakebites. And don't grumble, as some of them did, and then were destroyed by the angel of death. These things happened to them as examples for us. They were written down to warn us who live at the end of the age," 1 Corinthians 10:1-11.

God was not pleased with those who had an entitlement mentality with Him then, and He still doesn't like it today. So what is His will for us?

"Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you belong to Christ Jesus," 1 Thessalonians 5:18.

Are you one of those who profess gratitude while complaining about God's process of blessing you? How could your life change, and your relationship with God improve, if you stopped the grumbling and were just truly grateful?

Scotty

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