What kind of heir am I?
There’s the entitled kind who squander their parents fortune under the guises of “general office and administrative expenses.” Or, they sue their brothers for cutting off their $10K monthly allowance before heading off to a rehab center named after their family. Or, they end up with names like “million-dollar milk-fed baby” who by the time they die at 97 have lost “$100K to gold digging wives1.” And the list could go on and on.
While these are extreme examples of heirs who have lived a life of the entitled, the reality is we are all heirs and we are all entitled. So what kind of heirs are we?
The Urban Dictionary defines entitled as an attitude, demeanor, or air of rudeness, in graciousness, or combativeness, especially when making excessive demands for service (and can I add money?).
It seems that most of us would agree that this definition describes the general attitude that has taken over America today. It even made the cover of Time Magazine. People act like they deserve anything and everything simply because they exist.
And, if I’m honest, no matter how hard I try, this sneaks into my own life more often than I realize. I may not be squandering millions or even hundreds, but even in my sometimes negative comments about public assistance and those who take advantage of it, I’m demonstrating this attitude. It comes out when I see a person in need, then look in my envelope and say to myself that I’m not sure how I will get through the month, and so I do nothing.
If I am to begin combating this selfish, arrogant attitude that is perpetuated by modern culture, I must remembered that I am an heir and I bare a title.
One of the definitions of entitled is “to be called by a particular name2.”
By what name am I called?
1 John 3:1 “See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.”
I am the daughter of the King, a child of God.
What does that mean?
It means that everything I have is because of Him:
- my life,
- this beautiful planet I call home that filled with amazing beauty and the resources it provides to sustain my life,
- my talents and skills that make me unique,
- the provision for every need I have,
- a constant connection to the Father who loves me unconditionally,
- and eternal life through the giving of His son so that we may never be apart.
It is from Him and through Him that I have breath and every provision met. So, it is by offering it all back and to Him that I am supposed to live (Rom 11:36).
When I remember my title and the inheritance of eternal life that I have received, it should cause me to live with my hands wide open in thankfulness for all that God has given me. It should cause me to evaluate my attitudes and the priorities I set with my time, my gifts/skills, and my money.
My family and I were blessed with a great reminder of this while having lunch with a homeless man named Andy. As we asked him to share his story with and probed him about his needs he said, “God meets my every need. I’ve made some mistakes, but God has never forgotten me.” We were offering to purchase whatever this man said he needed, but he was certain he didn’t need anything.
Giving like no one else starts as a matter of the heart. We must become so overwhelmed in the vast measure to which God has given to us, that our self-righteous, independent spirits are consumed by His generosity. We must submit to the title “child of God” and recognize our inheritance is gift to be shared.
We are heirs of the greatest giver of all time. We are entitled with His name. Anyone can squander an inheritance, but who can out give God?
(Just in case you missed the first post from this series, click here)
Slatalla, Michelle (2011). “Goodbye, family fortune.” Barron’s. Retrieved from http://online.barrons.com/article/SB50001424052702304715104576558721220595058.html#articleTabs_article%3D2