I have road rage issues. I know it, I try not to, but sometimes I just can't help myself.
When I see someone trying to cut in front of me in traffic on the highway, I quickly try to speed up and get as close to the bumper in front of me as possible, so that person can't get in. Or, when I'm merging from 2 lanes into one, and there's someone next to me, I speed up and cut them off. I know you do it too, don't lie.
Oh, but if you cut me off in that traffic line, or speed up so I can't be in front when merging, then you're just a mean person. I mean, I'm usually in a hurry when I'm driving, and whatever I'm on my way to do, is much more important than whatever they are on their way to do. Right?
That is of course, until I see that it's the pastor, or someone I know... then I pretend like I didn't see them at first, and give them the right of way.
I do this with many things in life, I feel entitled. I feel like I deserve something. I've worked hard, I've been through a lot, I deserve happiness in my life.
But then, I look at the cross. What did Christ deserve? Surely not to be crucified for MY sins. The Bible says "the wages of sin are death" (Romans 6:23a). It doesn't matter how much good I've done, or how hard I've worked. I have sinned at some point in my life. Some times more than others (depends on how much I have to drive).
So really what I deserve is death. I'm not entitled to anything. I deserve to live a life of misery and punishment.
But the verse continues "but the gift of God is eternal life" (Romans 6:23b). I did nothing to deserve it, but God chose to give up His seat in heaven, come to earth, become human, suffer and die...for me. I've known this for a long time, but I still can't wrap my head around it. Why would a perfect God love me so much? It doesn't make sense, but it's true.
I work with kids, and we use an illustration to help them understand what it means to follow Jesus. It's a car with 2 holes one behind the other. In the front hole sits a person. That person represents you. You are driving the car. Then you ask Jesus into your life, and He gets in the backseat. So now you are still driving, but you have Jesus in the car with you. As you grow and trust Jesus, you switch places and let Jesus drive.
So the next time I think I'm entitled to cut someone off, I have to remind myself to "let Jesus drive". The next time I feel I deserve better than the life I'm given, I have to remind myself to "let Jesus drive". He died for me even though I did nothing to earn it, the least I can do is trust that He knows best. Who knows, maybe He will even take the bad things I didn't "deserve" and use them to help others, or write a book. ;)
I want to hear from you. When have you received something you didn't think you deserved, good or bad?