Luke 12:22-34 (Message), “ He continued this subject with his disciples. “Don’t fuss about what’s on the table at mealtimes or if the clothes in your closet are in fashion. There is far more to your inner life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body. Look at the ravens, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description, carefree in the care of God. And you count far more. Has anyone by fussing before the mirror ever gotten taller by so much as an inch? If fussing can’t even do that, why fuss at all? Walk into the fields and look at the wildflowers. They don’t fuss with their appearance—but have you ever seen color and design quite like it? The ten best-dressed men and women in the country look shabby alongside them. If God gives such attention to the wildflowers, most of them never even seen, don’t you think he’ll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you? What I’m trying to do here is get you to relax, not be so preoccupied with getting so you can respond to God’s giving. People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep yourself in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met. Don’t be afraid of missing out. You’re my dearest friends! The Father wants to give you the very kingdom itself. Be generous. Give to the poor. Get yourselves a bank that can’t go bankrupt, a bank in heaven far from bankrobbers, safe from embezzlers, a bank you can bank on. It’s obvious, isn’t it? The place where your treasure is, is the place you will most want to be, and end up being.”
Jesus was talking to his disciples about “things” or clothes and food and He tells them “fear not” or in another version, “don’t be anxious” about those things. I like the messages version- “don’t fuss”. Babies and toddlers fuss. They get fussy because they are hungry or thirsty and it’s the only way to express this, or they can’t verbalize what they need. We shouldn’t be fussy. Also the message says to relax, don’t be so preoccupied with getting so you can respond to God’s giving.”He wants to give us all we need and even things we don’t need, but really want. The Israelites always had a sense of entitlement. Their title of “God’s chosen people” made them think that they alone were entitled to His goodness, even when they rebelled against Him and behaved like fussy toddlers.
The spirit of entitlement is rampant in the United States. We leave jobs, churches, marriages, friend ships, and sometimes even our country because we think we haven’t received what “we are entitled to.” A common phrase is, “they owe me!” Whether it is used in regards to our parents, pastor, boss, or our government. There are some that even go as far as to think their children owe them “for all we’ve done for them.” Entitlement causes laziness and an “it’s not my job” mentality. How many of us walk past garbage on the sidewalk, or our church parking lot and don’t bend to pick it up? How many of us on our jobs refuse to do anything that isn’t in our job description? In fact that is part of the problem of modern day unions. They breed the entitlement mentality.
The opposite of entitlement is a quiet confidence that God will provide what I need. We need to keep our eyes on God, our source, not on our boss, the government, or our pastor. Now, don’t get me wrong, we need people! No man is an island. God put us together in families, and He told us to bring our petitions before Him. To ask and keep on asking, but keep your attitude right. He doesn’t bless us because we deserve it, or because we are entitled to it. Nope, His only motive is love.
“The only way to break the spirit of entitlement is thru service. Allowing God to use us in any way He asks us.” Pastor Isaac Litke
This world has nothing for us. God is our provider.
Galatians 4:1-7 (NIV), “ What I am saying is that as long as an heir is underage, he is no different from a slave, although he owns the whole estate. The heir is subject to guardians and trustees until the time set by his father. So also, when we were underage, we were in slavery under the elemental spiritual forces of the world. But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship. Because you are his sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba Father.” So you are no longer a slave, but God’s child; and since you are his child, God has made you also an heir.”
Jesus came so that we could be adopted into the family. Now we are joint heirs with Him. What does Jesus need? What does He lack? We have what He has, no really! You might not see it in the natural, but isn’t that what faith is all about?
Hebrews 11:1 (KJB), “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”
Think of it like the money you have in your checking account. You may not have it in your hand, but you know it is there. In fact you are so confident in this fact that you use your debit card to get gas and write checks to pay your bills. We have an account in heaven with “treasures old and new” (Matthew 13:52). Before we can ever see it with our natural eyes, we have to see it with our spiritual eyes.
Who gets everything? Everyone- who surrenders themselves to Him. Surrender isn’t a bad word! When we aren’t God’s we are Satan’s. You can’t serve two masters. So which “Father” do you want to surrender to? Which mission do you want to work under (that’s what the word submit means)? I choose to serve a loving Father. I tried it the other way, even though I didn’t fully understand who I was serving, and it didn’t work too well for me.
I choose God.
I choose Love.
I choose Everything!