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From the DayBreaks Archive, 3/17/2005:
News flash: the world isn’t fair. Well, I guess you probably already knew that, right? If you’re a parent, you’ve probably said that to one of your kids at least once. Kids are great for pointing out that the world isn’t fair, but their problem is that they think the world should be fair, and that they should not ever be on the short end of any stick. That’s rather humorous in a way, because if the world was never unfair, there’d never be a short end of the stick anyway!
In his book, Disappointment with God, Philip Yancey wrote about Henri Nouwen and a family he knew in Paraguay. The father, a doctor, spoke out against the military regime there and its human rights abuses. Local police took their revenge on him by arresting his teenage son and torturing him to death. Enraged townsfolk wanted to turn the boy’s funeral into a huge protest march, but the doctor chose another means of protest. At the funeral, the father displayed his son’s body as he had found it in the jail – naked, scarred from the electric shocks and cigarette burns and beatings. All the villagers filed past the corpse, which lay not in a coffin but on the blood-soaked mattress from the prison. It was the strongest protest imaginable, for it put injustice on grotesque display.
“Isn’t that what God did at Calvary? ‘It’s God who ought to suffer, not you and me,’ say those who bear a grudge against God for the unfairness of life. The curse word expresses it well: God be damned. And on that day, God was damned. The cross that held Jesus’ body, naked and market with scars, exposed all the violence and injustice of this world. At once, the Cross revealed what kind of world we have and what kind of God we have: a world of gross unfairness, a God of sacrificial love.”
If there is anything that can redeem gross unfairness, it is an act of sacrificial love, that gives to those who have been unfairly treated a blessing far beyond anything they could have imagined for themselves. Was the cross fair? Was it fair that it was God on the cross, dying as the Innocent One on behalf of all those who are guilty? No. It was the most unfair thing in the history of the universe. But it happened. And the great unfairness has been swallowed up in the immense love and compassion of God.
Ps. 117:2 – For great is his love toward us, and the faithfulness of the LORD endures forever. Praise the LORD.
PRAYER: Thank You, Lord, for loving us more than being concerned about fairness! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
© 2015, Galen C. Dalrymple.
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