Friday, July 6

Battling Against Youth Entitlement
{Review: Cleaning House}

There is an epidemic in America, that could very well shred the last thread that we’re hanging by. You’ve probably noticed it: Youth Entitlement! It started about 30 years ago, parents and society catering to the every whim of its children. What we now have is a group of young adults {and younger} that are heading in to the world unable to not only care for themselves in the most basic ways, but do not have any sort of drive or determination to accomplish anything.*

We live in a youth-centric time. Everything is geared toward kids/teens whether it’s movies or music, academics or worship. And you know what, it isn’t working. We are creating a generation of self-righteous individuals, who exist and do only for what they can get. Churches are focusing more and more on programs for the youth, but more and more youths are leaving the church. Parents are focusing more and more on giving their kids everything, but their kids don’t know how to do anything.

Parents want to give their children every {child-like} desire of their hearts: But is that what is best for them?

In my own experience with the under 25 group, no, it’s not what’s best for them. So far we have a generation of individuals who view no ones needs, but their own, as important. Too many young adults today do not see the point of pushing forward when things get tough, to, as the saying goes, “Grab the bull by the horns”.

Many act as though they’re doing their bosses, parents, teachers and others around them a favor by simply existing. They feel that they’re entitled to not only working when {and only when} they feel like it, but to having high-paying jobs, money, luxuries, good grades etc, without putting forth any effort into them: They’re wrong. The world around you doesn’t care whether you had a bad day or not. The world doesn’t exist for your glory, you exist for God’s glory.

“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.”
Colossians 3:23

I grew up working on my parents small farm. My days consisted of helping care for our huge garden, as well as helping in any and all family business ventures; whether it was raising calves, pigs, chickens, rabbits, or goats or slaughtering the animals that we raised. I was expected to do household chores, whether it was cooking, cleaning, laundry or anything else. I was expected to maintain good grades in school. I started mowing lawns for spending money when I was 13. I didn’t have an allowance: If I wanted something I had to work and save up my money for it.

Did I {always} like doing the work? No, sometimes I really hated it. It’s not much fun mucking out a barn when it’s 90*s and the rabbits in the cage above you are still peeing and pooping while you’re underneath (fortunately, very rarely did I get peed or pooped on, but it did happen); it’s not much fun when it’s 20* in the morning and you have to go lug 5 gallon buckets of water for chickens and turkeys, then move their pens and be slip-sliding {and sometimes falling} in their manure, before getting dressed for school.

BUT! I will say I know how to work. I know that work is necessary and good for the soul: We were not designed to lounge around, without a purpose. We were created for work. It builds character. It builds a sense of accomplishment, a sense of true self-worth.

“Lazy hands make a man poor, but diligent hands bring wealth.”
Proverbs 10:4

I recently received the book Cleaning House: A Mom’s 12-Month Experiment to Rid Her Home of Youth Entitlement by Kay Wills Wyma via Blogging for Books to Cleaning House Cover Imagereview. Wyma takes on entitlement-issues in her own children over the course of 12 months, during which she focuses on different areas in her childrens’ life where she is seeing their inflated self-worth and entitlement. Beginning with the childrens’ responsibility to keep their rooms clean and moving on to other areas such as the bathrooms, cooking and cleaning the kitchen, cleaning bathroom, home repairs, and employment outside the home.

While her kids often put up a fight with the addition of each new responsibility, they did rise to the occasion {however grudgingly}. She started to see a marked improvement in her childrens’ attitudes, how they treated each other, and how they viewed themselves.

Wyma’s sense of humor through it all and addressing her own issues as an enabler of her childrens’ entitlement-issues kept the book light, and real. As moms we often think “it’s easier if I just do it myself” or “they’re kids…they should be having fun, not worrying about laundry”; but neither of those mindsets help our children to become responsible adults, who know they are capable of doing what they are required to do.

This plague of Youth Entitlement must end, but first it must begin in our homes. I’m pretty sure our fore-fathers said “PURSUIT of happiness”, not a guarantee of happiness, or that it would be handed to you {as much as our government would like America’s youth to think that}. Having a job, a nice car, clothes, a house, insurances and the latest technological gadgetries are not a right for anyone. They are things that must be worked for, doing our best, always. Why not start young in our children, helping them to truly be the best they can be.
Please be sure to go and rate my review of this book here. Thanks!
*This does not apply to ALL young adults, teens and children, but definitely a growing majority of them.

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