The Gospel Is Not Fair

“I just don’t think it’s fair.”

I was complaining to my husband, and the frustration of the day poured out of me as I recounted the story. I had played by the rules, poured my heart and soul into a project, and worked my tail off to get it done.

And then I had sat back and watched as someone else received the praise for all of my hard work.

My blood was boiling, and I couldn’t tell if I wanted to scream or cry.

Later that night, I was reading in Luke 6. When Jesus entered the synagogue and ran into a man whose hand was withered, I found myself nodding along. “Yes, Jesus. I feel withered, and I could really use a love story right now.”

But the more I read, the more I realized that I was not the man with the withered hand. Instead, God revealed to me how much my heart was like the heart of the Pharisees. I was focused on self-justification and frustrated because I was following the rules but not receiving the reward.

It is humbling to realize that sometimes you’re the bad guy in your own story. It wasn’t about whether I was in the right or not; it was about the state of my heart.

The irony of the Pharisees is that the people who were supposed to love God the most were the ones who ended up killing Him. They were the main antagonists to Jesus, and we become antagonists to His message when we become focused on self-righteousness.

Rule-following did not save my soul; grace did. When I meditate on that truth, my attitude switches from self-importance and pride to gratitude and humility.

Ultimately, God reminded me that life is not fair. But neither is the Gospel—and thank goodness! I don’t get what I deserve, because I get what Jesus deserved instead. He did all of the work, and I get all of the credit.

How’s that for a love story? ♥️

God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us,
so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.
— 2 Corinthians 5:21

12 Comments

  1. This was spot-on and so good! What a humbling experience when we realize are attitude is that of the Pharisees! But praise God that the gospel isn’t fair! Thank you for these thoughts.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Number 2 though. That is so me. I am still coming to terms with my mess in that area. I follow the [rules] to the best of my ability, walk the straight and narrow, only to look over to someone who doesn’t care at all about those two things getting “blessed”!! Aaaahhh! Thanks so much for sharing this. It’s confirmation on so many levels!

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    1. I am right there with you! But I’m sure that’s exactly what the pharisees were thinking when they looked over and saw Jesus eating with the tax collectors and sinners. It’s a hard truth to accept about myself

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  3. “it is humbling to realize that sometimes you’re the bad guy in your own story.” So true! And I think it’s only when we recognize this that we can start to do something about it. Lovely post!

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  4. This is absolutely beautiful!! Thank you so much for sharing with this perspective. I love the line “He did all the work and I get all the credit” it makes me want to bust out in singing Amazing Grace, because it surely is a sweet sweet sound!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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