Fairness is encouraged in the classroom, and at home, and has fostered the belief in some people that life should be fair all the time. The criminal mind tends to harbor a grudge for a past injustice, real or perceived, for years – and at the right moment, take steps to “even the score.” Vengeful behavior may also be targeted at people who seem to have gotten more than they deserve. People with this mindset will believe they put in equal or more effort, and should have gotten at least the same if not more. They keep score, and may steal or destroy the property of others to even things up.
Others become angered, and may even turn to violence, when they perceive a person didn’t get what they deserve or got less than they deserve, perhaps, in the courtroom. One of their family members may have been the victim of a crime, and their friends encouraged them to be patient and let the law handle it. Then, to their dismay, the charges were dropped due to a technicality, or the perpetrator got off with a simple “slap on the wrist.”
A person with the “life should be fair” mindset may decide to take the law into their own hands, rather than waiting on God to take care of the injustice. They may execute what they consider to be a fair punishment themselves, or find/hire someone else to do it. This isn’t a new idea. In America, this practice started back during the time of the “Old Wild West”, when the nearest sheriff may have been a day’s ride away. Lynching parties were common for horse thieves. And hired guns were a commodity for the filthy rich. Today there are still vigilantes, terrorists, and mercenaries who will “take care of business” for a price.
The spiritual issue with always wanting life to be fair is that it tempts us to let anger, resentment, and bitterness take up residence in our heart. Anger itself isn’t a sin, but venting our anger can be destructive. We need to learn to wait on God, and seek His perspective on the situation.
What does this verse say about whether life is fair or not?
Continue to Chapter 6