An unusual amount of professional athletes reside in the town where I live. The adventurous mountain terrain attract them. Big name brands in the outdoor sports industry gobble up some of the most talented skiers, snowboarders, and mountaineers for sponsorship and association. And there seems to be a common theme among these individuals: they carry a sense of privilege when it comes to association with the most prestigious brands in the sports industry. They carry an unapologetic honor when it comes to the names that they represent on their skis, jackets, helmets, shoes, packs, and more. And though their respective sports involve hard work, it does not seem to dampen that sense of honor in who they represent.
I’ve wondered sometimes if I live with that sense of privilege with something far more significant than a professional skier sponsorship. If I’m honest, I have not. In fact, it’s often been the opposite. My own self-preferring ways combined with an entitlement-saturated culture mix to poison the great sense of privilege that it is to be a follower of Jesus Christ.
An attitude of entitlement may be more common than we think in our lives. Every act of complaining as a Christian bursts from a moment of entitlement: I complain because I see myself as deserving of my demands rather than privileged to know God. Lack of gratitude flows from a sense of arrogant entitlement: I am not thankful because I feel that it is God and people’s duty to give me what I want.
But, even a surface reading of Scripture tells us that life as God’s redeemed is one of immense privilege: “What is man that You take thought of him?” (Ps. 8:4). Salvation is where the most glorious Being in the universe allows some of the most offensive beings in the universe to know him savingly. Christ permits us to know him. He is the individual of greatest supremacy, glory, and majesty in the universe. There is no one like him. He is the Creator; the self-existent eternal One; the impeccable sinless Son of God; the Savior who laid down his life. The privilege is all ours when it comes to salvation.
Here a few perspective shifts which may help to remind us that the Christian life is an immense privilege: