Most people have said that life isn’t fair. We’ve all heard someone else say it. People often think they are getting less than they deserve or worse than they deserve. They are good in one way or another, yet something bad is happening to them anyway. They declare that life is not fair.
I know life isn’t fair. My parents taught me not to expect life to be fair. Bad things happen to good people. But I also learned it when I found what has become one of my favorite Bible passages:
The Lord is compassionate and gracious,
slow to anger, abounding in love.
He will not always accuse,
nor will he harbor his anger forever;
he does not treat us as our sins deserve
or repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his love for those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
— Psalm 103:8-12
In reality, we are the beneficiaries of the fact that life isn’t fair! How often do we do or think something bad or negative, but nothing bad or negative happens to us? Probably pretty often. Life was not fair for Gomer; Hosea treated her much better than she deserved. Likewise, our Lord does not give believers the treatment we’ve earned. Because of his love, God extends grace to us, favor that we in no way deserve. Our right response to this, as co-pastor Paul McDill said in his closing prayer at Sunnyvale on Sunday, is to “live a life that reflects that grace.” Generous grace and mercy toward others is our best expression of gratitude when we fully grasp that, for the believer, life really isn’t fair.