Good day Friends! I pray your week and weekend went well!
I have always enjoyed purchasing Christmas gifts for my family. Like any parent, I always have tucked away the thought that I should spend close to the same amount for each child in order to be fair. Although I do consider that to a certain extent when it comes to Christmas gift giving, I have found that life does not work that way. This sense of fairness and justice is something of a quandary these days.
Let’s top up our coffees and dig into this a bit….
Fair and just!
For gaining wisdom and instruction; for understanding words of insight; for receiving instruction in prudent behavior, doing what is right and just and fair. Proverbs 1:2-3
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8
My youngest son has always had a very strong sense of ‘fairness’. I remember, when he was in elementary school, meeting with him and his teacher(s) because he stood up against someone who did not act fairly, even if that person was the teacher. His actions didn’t go over very well at times. I learned by the senior elementary years to be proactive and to meet with the teacher at the very beginning of each school year. This meeting allowed me the opportunity to give a brief overview of my dear son, in order for the teacher to have a better understanding of who he was and where he was coming from. For the most part, it did help, and certainly opened the door for those teachers to feel free to communicate with me – at times quite regularly – to share something else he did or said, and whom he stood up for. Each time allowed us the opportunity to dissect his actions and review their appropriateness. Although it put him at odds with others in authority when he was younger, my son’s sense of fairness has attributed to him becoming a man of integrity and quiet wisdom.
God too has a deep sense of fairness. He is the perfect referee, and ultimate judge. He doesn’t show partiality. He expects obedience. He desires us to obey him and to trust him, even if he doesn’t tell us the whole story, or if we feel like we are walking with a blindfold on, or even if obeying him means we have to give up something we really want. What we might consider fair must first be weighed against the Ten Commandments and God’s truth. However, in so many ways, society has lost these guidelines for fairness.
God’s fairness goes hand in hand with him being the ultimate judge. In fact, in his perfect judgement, God proclaimed that sin deserves death. Sin is serious business. God hates sin. Sin separates us from God. To be the perfect judge with ultimate fairness, we should not have any right or access to God. We are dead in our sins, and he holds us accountable. He requires sins to be punished and paid for. Oh how our justice system pales against God’s, where God’s laws – let alone common sense- are thrown out the window, and where no one seems to need to be accountable.
Despite what man’s justice system pronounces, God proclaims punishment for sin and he doesn’t let it slide, and that is exactly why Jesus had to be born. God knew we couldn’t be perfect and he knew his penalty for sin. So he sent the only one who could bear all those sins and pay the terrible penalty – death- for them, God himself. Was that fair? It may not have been fair for God, but it was more than fair for us. It was the ultimate act of grace, mercy and justice. Why? Because of his love for us, for you and me.
So, let’s not look at the next person and say that’s fair or not fair. All we can do is look at ourselves and our own personal relationship with the Lord, know his will, pray for his strength and guidance in all we say, think and do, and hold fast to that saving ransom that Christ made on our behalf, and give him thanks and praise.
So this Christmas, even if you don’t get the gift you want or think you deserve, just remember that in Christ, you got way more than you ever deserve!
Prayer: Lord, thank-you for sending Christ to stand in my place at the judgement seat where my sins condemn me. Please forgive me and wash me clean. Help me to see the seriousness of sin and how much you hate it. Help me to walk in your ways, and that all I do is pleasing to you. In Jesus’ name I pray. AMEN!
Reflection: Have you ever felt like you were being shafted; someone wasn’t ‘playing’ fair? How did you respond to the situation: with rebellion, with grace, with revenge, with mercy, or did you give it to the Lord? How did you feel after all the transactions transpired? In any case, give these situations to the Lord. Ask him to guide your responses towards others, but also to have the courage to be accountable for your own sinfulness. Finally, trust that God is guiding you for your good, and that in all things he is the ultimate judge of what is fair, or not.