Thursday, October 17, 2013

It's Not Fair!

Recently, I was corresponding via email with two friends who have retired and relocated to the south. I said, "I'm still here. No fair!" 

My husband, recovering from surgery, gets to sleep till 10:00 am every morning and I have to get up at 5:30 for work.  "No fair!" 

I have had some medical issues lately, and while the news wasn't bad that I got yesterday, it wasn't what I wanted to hear. I went home and cried, "Why do all these things have to happen to me all at once?" I may as well have said, "It's not fair!"

Is it fair that babies are born addicted to crack? Is it fair that my dear friend, who gave so much to the community, died of lung cancer and never smoked a day in her life? Is it fair that someone is born into poverty with no hope of escape? Is it fair that a young woman becomes a drug addict after one dose of heroin? Is it fair that a 50+ grey-haired man loses his job because he is old?

How dare I decide what is fair and what is not? I have a warm house, a job, a bed, in which I can sleep till 10:00 (on Saturday, if desired!), a husband who loves me (and still has a job!), children who have grown into responsible adults, and basically, good health. I could go on and on with the blessings I do have. Why do I focus on what I don't have?

My bible's concordance is strangely silent on what is "fair."  I'm sure there are other synonyms of "fair" but after the "just" lesson the other day, I'm not going there.  The one reference I found is in Proverbs 1:3. Paraphrased, King Solomon basically says that the proverbs that are following are useful for many things, including what is fair. 

I guess he would know. He had to decide what was fair when two prostitutes came to him with one baby.  The first claimed that they had each had a baby, but the other one accidentally smothered her baby in the middle of the night.  That woman took the first one's baby and claimed him as her own. The second one, the one who'd presumably lost her baby, swore that this baby was indeed her own, and the first one was lying. There was no DNA testing back then, and the King probably got tired of hearing these two bickering prostitutes, and said, "Oh, just get my sword and I'll cut the baby in half. That way, you'll each have a baby...or, a half a baby." That's fair right? After all, don't we do that with our children? Break the cookie in half? (Of course one always swears the other has the bigger half!)

Of course, the real mother said, "NO! Don't kill him! Let Number Two have the baby!" That's when Solomon knew that this was the real mother.

I'll tell you what's not fair...arresting an innocent man for the crime of supposed blasphemy. Allowing a real criminal to be released instead of an innocent man.  Beating that innocent man to the point that he is unrecognizable-for blasphemy? No fair! Stripping him naked. Yes, we see the loincloth in the movies and in pictures, but my guess is they stripped him completely naked. Striking him on the head. Forcing him to carry his method of death to the place of his death. Kicking him when he was down. Spitting in his face. Hurling insults. Laughing and mocking him. Pounding nails into his flesh, through his wrists. Pounding nails through the tender bones in his feet.  Leaving him to die. Watching him die. Waiting for him to die. Hoping he would die before sundown so that they could go home and enjoy the Sabbath. 

I'll tell you what else is not fair. That same man did all that so that I wouldn't have to. He did it all without lashing out at his accusers. He never screamed, "This isn't fair! I don't deserve this! I am GOD! I'll get you for this!" He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth." (Isaiah 53:7).He did it silently. He did it willingly. He did it for me. And for you. 

He has suffered every injustice known to man-everything known to you and more. He knows it's not fair. But He wants to know how you will react in the face of injustice. Will you scream, "It's not fair!" or will you remember the man who suffered so much more than you are suffering? The next time you say, "It's not fair!"...remember the One who went silently and willingly to his death in your place. Instead of saying, "It's not fair!" why don't we try saying, "Thank you, Jesus!"

Blessings Along the Path,

Video/Song of the Day:VERY COOL!

David Garibaldi-Jesus Painter 
(to the song "We Will Never Be the Same-David Crowder Band)

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