“You should take that trip. You know you deserve it!”
“You have been through so much. You deserve a break.”
“Treat yourself. You’ve worked so hard. You deserve it.”
We tell ourselves all the time that we “deserve” things. A new car, a pedicure, dessert. Whatever it is – a material thing or even a spiritual good – we convince ourselves that there is something about us that makes us more deserving than the next guy. Maybe we’ve worked harder. Maybe we’ve already suffered through more trials. Maybe we just live in a nicer neighborhood, where everyone else already has the blessing we covet.
We even use this thinking to justify sinful behavior. You deserve some spice in your life, so a casual affair isn’t really wrong. You deserve more pay, so it isn’t really wrong to steal from your boss. You deserve a child, so it’s fine to take advantage of unethical technology to conceive one. You deserve a home remodel, so it’s fine to ignore the real needs of the poor and spend your donation money on yourself.
Think for a moment about what you really deserve.
Do you deserve your good health, your comfortable bed, your job? Do you deserve to be respected and admired? Do you deserve a car to drive to work in?
You may say, “Yes, I deserve those things. I work hard. I’m a good person.”
Are the poor not good? Do the poor not work hard?
Does your neighbor deserve to have cancer? Does your friend deserve to be beaten by her husband? Does that man deserve to be unemployed for a year?
When we feel we are not getting what we deserve, or are getting more than our share of troubles, it is natural to ask “Why me?” Perhaps a better question is “Why not me?”
The bottom line is we have received one thing we clearly do not deserve. We have a God who became one of us so that He could die in our place.
Now, what do you really deserve?
You have everything you need.