At Young Life camp a couple of weeks ago Allen Levi made a comment that has stuck with me. In speaking of parenthood, he asked are we raising children to feel entitled or entrusted?
I have mulled this a lot since then. As I have watched my children fall victim to the greed that tends to rear its head around gift receiving occaisions like birthdays, I am reminded how difficult it is to gratefully receive--without beginning to feel entitled.
As we walked through Walmart this morning the children pointed out a $50 inflatable football player they wanted me to impulsively purchase (despite all the 'loot' they have aquired this weekend.) After giving them a mini lecture, I asked myself if we were doing enough to help our children understand our responsibility to receive gratefully and behave responsibly with what God has entrusted to our care. Do they feel entitled or entrusted?
We are intentional about exposing our children to opportunities to give to others. We talk about our Compassion sponsored children. They are exposed to the foster children at the childrens' home. We have befriended homeless people. My husband and I have hearts for ministry and serving others. Yet, I still struggle in the impulse purchase category--and if I am honest, far too much of my life reeks of entitled rather than entrusted.
From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked. Luke 12:48b NIV
Today as the children and I watched a small, lightly attended Memorial Day parade in my town, I pondered why more people were not there to celebrate the true meaning of this day. Was it anything more than an after thought or a vacation day for most? Have we taken the great sacrifice of others for granted? I heard the question whispering to my soul again: Entitled or entrusted?
It was then that it struck me: This issue goes far beyond material blessings. What would society look like if we could begin to grasp ALL that we have been entrusted with: countless freedoms and rights, health, life, the list goes on...
Here again a lesson meant for my children has struck a chord of conviction in my own heart. We are so comfortable. It is far too easy to be lulled into complacency. May we not be so entitled we forget all that we have been entrusted.