Is Life Fair?
WHEN life isn't fair, what can we do about it? Scream? Jump up and down? Yes, we can do these things, but there's a much better course of action. We can turn to our divine Parent and ask to be shown what to do. At a luncheon in my home, one guest arrived so inebriated she could barely walk. Here was a person with everything going for her -- husband, brilliant children, a lovely home, and a career that was skyrocketing -- while my career was plummeting. What possible reason did she have to drink?
Self-righteousness took over. Why was someone like that getting the very best, while hard-working, faithful me had few rewards? It wasn't fair!
After several days of ruminating, I remembered Christ Jesus' parable of the prodigal son.1 While the older son was faithful, attentive, obedient, and, as he believed, the epitome of righteousness, his younger brother was off squandering his share of his father's estate. When all was used up, and he was at his lowest, he returned home and humbly asked for forgiveness. This was granted, and his father called for a celebration. When the older son complained, his father answered, ``Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine.''
The parable was an eye-opener to me. Was I really being jealous? Was I concerned that life was treating my friend better than it was me? It could certainly be said that life wasn't fair to Jesus when he was falsely accused and crucified. What an example of humility when he said of his persecutors, ``Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.''2
The first verse of a hymn says,
Whatever dims thy sense of truth
Or stains thy purity, Though light as breath of summer air,
O count it sin to thee.3
To me, this means that to be envious, hateful, resentful, unkind, is a sin. Putting aside these false thoughts and replacing them with the truth that our life is secure in God, is our salvation. Yes, it may appear at times that our life is far from secure and that we've been victimized by one circumstance or another. But that's not the whole story -- or the true story -- because our genuine selfhood is the spiritual offspring of God, inseparable from His care and eternal justice. This is divine law, which can be proved in our lives. We have recourse to the very power of God. ``My God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus,''4 says the Bible.
Although we may not be able to solve the problems of others, we can strive to cultivate a higher, spiritual view of all individuals and realize that all are under the jurisdiction of impartial divine law, governed by good alone.
Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, says: ``To me the reality and substance of being are good, and nothing else. Through the eternal reality of existence I reach, in thought, a glorified consciousness of the only living God and the genuine man. So long as I hold evil in consciousness, I cannot be wholly good.''5
When we truly love God and our neighbors, we're not naively ignoring evil. Rather we're helping to bring out the reality of being, which is good, and no one or thing can deprive us of knowing and feeling that reality more consistently. God is Life and God is All, and His eternal justice blesses all.
1See Luke 15:11-32. 2Luke 23:34. 3Christian Science Hymnal,No. 383. 4Philippians 4:19. 5Unity of Good, p. 49.