I used to think that taking a hot shower every day was a right that was mine as a hard-working tax-payer. But 5 kids and 13 years of parenting later, I realize that taking a shower is, in fact, a HUGE privilege. I know it is an honor to be so popular that a toddler must sit on the toilet and wait for me to finish showering or shove their chubby hands under the door so I can see them or children must yell, “MOOOOOOOOOOM” while I’m in the shower, just because they love me so much. But I have to admit that the idea of an interruption free shower with actual hot water makes me want to swoon.
Sometimes these simple things are wonderful, but sometimes when they don’t go like we plan, we can get really bent out of shape. Think about the creature comforts in life that we take for granted: a warm shower or a hot cup of coffee. Let either get cold and it threatens to make us HOT around the collar, grumpy and mean. We call it a ruined morning. But God probably calls it immaturity and sin. Can I get a witness here? I’m talking to myself. Let a big crisis come my way and I’m as cool as a cucumber. Let me spill my coffee and I threaten to come unglued.
What is with us? We think we have a right to comfort and we deserve for things to go well. I have traveled overseas on several occasions and seen people standing in line to buy bread and wearing the same clothes day after day. Do you suppose in the scheme of things a cold shower would rattle them very much? I doubt it.
We’ve fallen into a trap as Americans believing that we somehow “deserve” more. We work hard and we “deserve” for things to be nice and comfortable. We are doubly guilty as American Christians because we have known so much prosperity. We think that if we serve God and go to church that our lives should be without trial or aggravation. And when we ARE aggravated we make excuses for our actions and words because we “deserve” more and it’s “understandable” that we are so aggravated. After all, who should put up with all this aggravation? Satan often takes a free reign in our reactions, doesn’t he?
The thing is, we want what we want when we want it and furthermore, we think we have a right to it. But do we really? What things in your world do you consider to be “rights” or something you “deserve”? And would you be willing to give them up? For those of us who are a part of the family of God, we have been given so MUCH MORE than we deserve. We deserve to pay the full price for our sins, but what we have received is a Savior who has paid the price for us. Let that put things in perspective the next time we say we deserve something or it’s our right. And then be thankful we haven’t gotten what we deserve.
Ok, it’s not wrong to have warm showers and hot coffee. I like both. But when we don’t get these trivial “rights” that we “deserve” how do we respond? And do we pursue “stuff” because we thing we deserve it? Or can we not see that all we have is a blessing. I’m afraid we are not willing to give up our “rights” very often. Rather, we sacrifice relationships, people, the important things for the sake of the trivial? We tend to be focused on the temporal instead of the permanent.
Thank you God that you haven’t given me what I deserve. May I be that gracious to the people in my world…….even if my shower is cold, interrupted or non-existent and my coffee is on my shirt. And help me to never think that I deserve what you have given me.
Ephesians 2:8-9 – “8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.”