Combating Entitlement Mentality Within the Church

by | Apr 28, 2023 | Church Health, Church Leadership, Discipleship | 0 comments

As a pastor, I have seen firsthand the effects of an entitlement mentality within the local church. It can be a toxic attitude that can not only damage relationships but also hinder the church’s mission to share the good news of Jesus and serve and love others. In this blog post, I want to explore an entitlement mentality, why it’s harmful, and what we, as a church, can do to address it.


What is an entitlement mentality?


An entitlement mentality is an attitude where people feel they deserve something without necessarily having earned it. This mentality can be seen in many different areas of life, including work, relationships, and even in the church. In the context of the church, an entitlement mentality can manifest in many ways, such as:

  • Expecting the church to cater to their personal preferences
  • Refusing to serve or give financially because they don’t see the direct benefit for themselves
  • Believing they have a right to certain positions or privileges within the church
  • Believing they have the right to use sound equipment, chairs, tables, etc., without asking.


Why is an entitlement mentality harmful?


An entitlement mentality can harm the local church for several reasons. Firstly, it can create an atmosphere of selfishness and entitlement, which is contrary to the gospel’s message of selflessness and sacrifice. Secondly, it can lead to division and conflict within the church. When people believe they are entitled to certain things, they can become resentful when those things are not given to them. This can create a sense of “us versus them” within the church, leading to a breakdown of relationships and a lack of unity.

Thirdly, an entitlement mentality can hinder the church’s mission. The Great Commission and the Great Commandment should be front and center in all we do. When people focus primarily on their wants and needs, it becomes a distraction. People who have this mentality are less likely to love and serve others which is at the heart of our Christian faith. This can lead to an inward-focused church rather than an outward-focused one, which is not what Christ intended for His church.


How can we address an entitlement mentality?


Addressing an entitlement mentality within the church is not an easy task, but it is essential if we want to see our church thrive and grow. Here are a few things we can do to address an entitlement mentality:

  1. Preach on the Gospel of Grace – Reminding our church members of the amazing grace we’ve received through Christ is a powerful way to combat the entitlement mentality. Understanding that we have received something we did not earn should lead us to be grateful and humble rather than entitled.
  2. Encourage Service – Encouraging church members to serve others is an effective way to combat an entitlement mentality. Serving others helps us to focus on the needs of others rather than our own wants and desires.
  3. Foster a culture of Gratitude – Gratitude is the opposite of entitlement. Cultivating a culture of gratitude within the church can be a powerful way to combat an entitlement mentality. Encourage your church members to express gratitude regularly and publicly for what they have and for what others have done for them.
  4. Address it directly – Sometimes, the most effective way to address an entitlement mentality is to call it out directly. This can be done in sermons or in one-on-one conversations with those who exhibit entitlement attitudes. A gentle and loving approach can go a long way in helping someone see the error of their ways. A message on Boundaries or Staying in One’s Field might be a way to approach this issue. 


In conclusion, an entitlement mentality is a harmful attitude that can hinder the church’s mission to serve and love others. 

May we all seek to serve and love one another as Christ has loved us.


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