(Editorial, MyFaith Magazine, September 2017)
by Waldo Malan
Joel Stein wrote an excellent article in Time Magazine titled Millennials: The Me Me Me Generation (May 20, 2013), in which he profiles the millennial generation. The two pervading characteristics of this generation (typically people born from 1980 to 2000) is narcissism and entitlement. Stein outlines the various reasons that led to this result and also concludes that this is a world-wide incidence – “Each country’s millennials are different, but because of globalization, social media, the exporting of Western culture and the speed of change, millennials worldwide are more similar to one another than to older generations within their nations.”
In essence, the problem with a millennial attitude is that it is completely anti-God. God is always giving, while a millennial attitude is always grabbing and taking. It is the difference of two people coming with hands outstretched, the one with palms up asking for something to be placed in them, while the other comes with something in their hands to give away. The problem with having palm-faced-up hands is the motivation that it is their ‘right’ to ask for something they never had any intention of obtaining by effort. Entitlement, by its definition, encourages laziness. If one is constantly expecting a free handout (and then receiving it in most cases), it will cultivate a leech-culture – only taking and never giving anything back in return. That is why Solomon writes, “The leech has two daughters, crying, Give! Give!” [Proverbs 30:15a AMP]. Leeching is nothing more than greed.
Greed, describes a selfish attitude, and selfishness is the antithesis to a Godly nature. Perhaps it is for this reason God included greed in the Ten Commandments He gave to the Israelites in the desert. Greed is a monster that is insatiable, and also an animal that grows in appetite the longer it is allowed to stay alive. It is something that will cause you to throw all caution to the wind in your endeavours simply for the sake of feeding it. It is therefore said that “a greedy person is in a hurry to get rich, but he is ignorant of the loss that is about to overtake him” [Proverbs 28:22 VOICE]. Selfishness has the tendency to consume a person, and in the process of total absorption destroy all relationships and create an emotionally desolate place. Ultimately a selfish person will end up alone and truly lost to himself and the rest of humanity.
It is clear to see that a selfish attitude (greed) simply has no place in faithful stewardship of God’s resources; and, without faithful stewardship there simply cannot be any blessing – neither spiritual nor material benefits whatsoever. So, will you join me in living a life dedicated to God and His principles, and forsake the satisfying of ‘self’?
[Read the MyFaith Magazine here]