They approached Eleazar the priest and Joshua the son of Nun and the leaders and said, “The Lord commanded Moses to give us an inheritance along with our brothers.” So according to the mouth of the Lord he gave them an inheritance among the brothers of their father. Joshua 18:4
Our American culture today breeds an attitude of entitlement. You’ll commonly hear phrases like, “He/She didn’t respect me!”. My wife and I worked in Student Life at a Christian university where parents would repeatedly defend their children’s detestable behavior. Believe me, all college-age kids tend to spread their wings a bit but if you could have taken a picture of the parent talking to one of the resident directors, the caption would have read, “What right do you have to tell my kid what to do!?!?”.
Honestly, I’m not sure where it started. It seems like it’s just become a gradual spread of a plague over the last couple generations. It wasn’t that long ago that the “Greatest Generation” existed and were later praised for the exact opposite character attributes. Many were at war or had recently come home from war and our nation was being re-built. It required work ethic, a sense of personal responsibility and no “poor me” mentality.
When the newly acquired land was being split up between the descendants of Manasseh, a handful of his (“great” several times over) granddaughters approached Eleazar the priest and Joshua asking for their inheritance in accordance to what God had instructed Moses to do. This is an incredible lesson. His granddaughters understood their only right to a claim of land came directly from God’s instruction. It wasn’t ultimately based any of the underlying circumstances; origin of birth, lineage, etc. They knew they had a firm defense because of what GOD had commanded.
Our expectations in this life should flow from God; both restrictive and those resulting in personal gain. The important thing to understand is that they both result in blessing. God prevents us from certain activities to provide us blessing. He also blesses us with gifts. Obviously, those are easier to stomach. If we’re able to set our expectations based on God’s instruction, it becomes more plain to see why we’ve veered as a nation and feel so deserving of things we were never promised. God, help us to see the importance of living life and setting our expectations on principles you’ve established and not to base our worth on anything we’ve accomplished or feel we’ve inherited otherwise.