Entitled or Enlightened

There is a world of difference between entitlement and enlightenment. I hear a great deal about entitlement from miserable people. It seems entitlement is the source of all society’s ills. Some say the poor are entitled while others put the same label on the wealthy. Entitlement is an equal opportunity enabler that attaches itself to anyone looking for what they believe they deserve.

When it comes to getting what I deserve, I thank God each day that I do not. I’ve learned to end my prayers with, “Please don’t give me what I want, Lord. Give me what you want for me and let the desires of your heart become the desires of mine.” That brings balance and peace and takes me out of my little world. It is the first step to enlightenment.

Enlightenment allows me to see my desires in a new light. Christ’s precious love changes the direction of my heart by allowing me to see myself as God sees me, and that opens up a new way of living and loving. Enlightenment looks outside of self to a world larger than I can imagine on my own. God’s enlightenment brings peace in turmoil and joy in troubled times because I know He is always with me.

Entitlement turns my attention inward. I deserve my piece of the pie and my time in the lamplight. That leads to violence and despair because I will never have or be enough. I will begin to want what others have, and I will do what I have to do to get it. The vicious cycle of violence will continue as long as I allow entitlement to have its way. I want my way; we all do, and that is why the world is the way it is. I point fingers at those who have different ideas of entitlement, and that polarizes and perpetuates the never-ending cycle.

Christ breaks the cycle of entitlement and brings a new world of enlightenment to all who allow His precious love to transform them. It isn’t easy to let go of entitlement, and no one knows that better than Christ. He laid aside His crown and became a helpless newborn to bring the light of His Father’s love to a world spinning out of control. He knew where the cycle led, and he knows it still leads there today. Christ will not force His enlightenment on the world because He knows force and enlightenment cannot exist together.

Entitlement forms alliances, and alliances become groups. Groups carry banners and spout venom at those who have a different form of entitlement. Their entitlement becomes a right to believe or do whatever suits the group. Enlightenment fades away when individuals become a faceless mob in a never-ending, hostile takeover. Christ offers a different way to live and relate. It isn’t easy to leave groups because there is a safety in anonymity, but Christ knows the heart and soul is lost in a mob. He stepped away from the mob in a radical move that shook and shifted the very foundation of this world so I could share the enlightening power of His love.

I can have my piece of the pie, or I can have the peace Christ offers. It is, and always will be, my choice. I don’t always make the right choice, but I feel the beautiful difference when I do. When my heart is balanced by Christ’s precious love, the world stops spinning around me. I may not always enjoy or understand God’s spin on things, but I’m a lot less dizzy when I come to the still place of peace His Son’s love offers.

New Morning

Lamentations 22-23 is a beautiful reminder that each day is new in God’s heart. May the same be true in my heart.

The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease,
For His compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness. (NASB)

If I allow God to write these words on my heart, my life will be a beautiful reflection of His love. I’m on Topsail Island with my sisters, and God gave a vivid image of that reflection.

Topsail 6-14-15

Ready for Some Rain

Love is a river

Flowing through the desert.

Bringing new life,

Changing everything.

God’s promises spring from deep love. I don’t appreciate His love as I should, and that is particularly true when I find myself wandering in the desert of my own desires. God knows the desert is the perfect environment for transformation because it creates a deep thirst that causes my heart to forget my wants and search for His living water.

Psalm 105:41-42 paints a beautiful picture of that water.

He split open a rock, and water gushed out
    to form a river through the dry wasteland.
For he remembered his sacred promise
    to his servant Abraham. (NLT)

I end up in the desert each time I search for answers I want to hear. God lets me wander in the wasteland because He knows I will find what I always find. Nothing but His love satisfies my heart’s thirst.

I was drenched by a downpour as I watched several baptisms on Sunday afternoon. I decided to walk after the storm passed over and got soaked on my way home by another. I let the rain wash over me before going inside because I was already saturated. I looked up, smiled, and realized God knew my heart was ready for some rain.
Living Water