That’s Not Fair!

In Hawaii, I somehow got roped into babysitting at a church event. All of us young second-generation Korean pastors have a joke that the Korean title for “assistant pastor” really means “cheap labor.”
But there I was in the nursery, with a handful of kids 2-7 who were a handful. And, I can’t remember how many times the word “Mine!” was shouted. 3 kids were fighting over a toy, when I had enough and walked over, took the toy and said, “MINE!” They all looked at me with a blank stare. “Until you learn to share, this toy is mine.” (I know I was sending a mixed message.) One of them finally uttered the 3 words that seem to follow us everywhere in life, “That’s not fair!”
We never seem to shake off that sentiment, no matter how old we are or whatever stage life may find us in.
When I was still living in Hawaii, I had a conversation with someone who was facing a string of bad luck. She couldn’t understand why everything was happening to her. And she finished her rant with, “It just isn’t fair. God is so unfair to me. I thought God was supposed to be fair!”
How true we want that statement to be.

I mean, if God was fair I’d be able to make a ball into a basket and be able to earn millions of dollars. If God was fair, seminary wouldn’t be so expensive and the ordination process wouldn’t be so dragging. If God was fair, pastors would make more money than reality tv stars.
If God was fair, the Redskins would… well. I don’t know if God could help them.

How would you end the sentence: If God was fair….

We find ourselves thinking, God isn’t fair. And no, He’s not.
If God was fair things would be different.
If God was fair, we would have to pay for our sins and shortcomings.
If God was fair, the wrong would be punished and the righteous would be justified. But if God was fair, there would be no justified righteous people. If God was fair, there would be no love. If God was fair, we would never have Christmas, because Jesus would not come to earth for the forgiveness of sins for the humankind.
We would sin. And sin. And sin. And God, if God was fair, would keep track, God would keep score of how many sins we committed.  And at the end, our sins would outnumber our acts of love and good that we do. If God was fair, God would seek that we get what we deserved. If God was fair, grace would not exist.
We find ourselves thinking, God isn’t fair. And no, He’s not.
God’s something far greater. This God is generous. We do not love a fair God, we love a generous God.
Because God is generous, God is able to find worth and treasures in our imperfections and brokenness. Because God is generous, our sins are forgiven. Because God is generous, instead of receiving the hell we would deserve, we receive God’s love, God’s grace, God’s Son instead.
So. Thank God, that God is not fair, but generous.
And we are called to be generous, like our Creator. Max Lucado once wrote, You’re not required to give more grace than what God has given to you.

May we give the grace and generosity to those in our lives that God has given to us.

2 thoughts on “That’s Not Fair!

  1. Probably one of ur best blogs ever. Really meaningful… And ur right, I don’t think God would help the redskins either… Lol. Jk.

  2. Amen! I remember once (years ago) making the argument to my sister (a seminarian at that point) “It’s not fair” and her wise retort was “In the end, we don’t want justice, we want mercy.” That phrase stuck and hits me like your post does.

    thank you!

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