“Why have you brought us up from Egypt to die in this desert,
where there is no food or water?
We are disgusted with this wretched food!”
Inspired by Yahweh, Moses had led the Israelites from captivity in Egypt toward a land of freedom. They had been given water and food to strengthen them on the journey. Yet, they complained because they wanted something better. They were willing to trade freedom for comfort. Their sense of entitlement overcame their sense of gratitude. How could they be expected to sacrifice satisfaction of their wants for a greater good? Does it all sound familiar? A sense of entitlement is a view which produces a prevailing mood of indifference. Instead of rejoicing in what we have, we greedily want something different. We trade greater amounts of freedom for comfort and gratification. While other peoples stand in line for hours for a chance to vote for freedom, we who are free often don’t bother to make the effort or to understand the issues. It is easier to assign blame and complain. We are content in Egypt.
“If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is thank you, it will be enough.”
Express your appreciation for the good things in your life. Be aware of when you are willing to sacrifice freedom for a lesser good. Be aware of any sense of entitlement that may creep into your thinking.
And Jesus answering said, “Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine?”
How long shall I bear with this evil congregation, which murmur against me? I have heard the murmurings of the children of Israel, which they murmur against me.
Those who surrender freedom for security will not have, nor do they deserve, either one.
The world has never had a good definition of the word liberty, and the American people, just now, are much in want of one. We all declare for liberty; but in using the same word we do not all mean the same thing.
The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance oo being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.
John Stuart Mill
If we do not feel grateful for what we already have, what makes us think we’d be happy with more?
Happiness is not a station you arrive at, but a manner of traveling.
Margaret Lee Runbeck
Think of what you have rather than of what you lack. Of the things you have, select the best and then reflect how eagerly you would have sought them if you did not have them.
In our daily lives, we must see that it is not happiness that makes us grateful, but the gratefulness that makes us happy.