All of us have been victims of injustice in the past year. To one degree or another, we have suffered from the unfair words and actions of others. We’ve been wronged by other people and yet they’ve got off with it while we’ve suffered painful consequences. We’ve been cheated, slandered, gossiped about, mistreated, and misrepresented. We’ve lost money, reputation, promotion, relationships, even jobs. People have abused their positions, their power, their privileges, their network to do us harm or prevent good coming to us. “It’s not fair!” and there’s nothing we can do about it.
We don’t need to be old to experience this. The youngest child knows something of this pain. One of the first phrases we seem to learn is, “Its’ not fair!” My bike is stolen, my favorite toy is broken, my brother thumps me and I can't thump him back. “It’s not fair!” and there’s nothing we can do about it.
As we get older the pain goes deeper as we maybe perceive favoritism in the family, suffer bullying at school, we are betrayed by friends, or become victims of social media smears. “It’s not fair!” and there’s nothing we can do about it.
Then we begin to learn about the great inequities in the world, the perks and privileges of the rich and powerful, the sufferings and sorrows of the weak and the oppressed. We see it to some degree in our own country; but we especially see it in other countries like Sudan, Congo, etc. “It’s not fair!” and there’s nothing we can do about it.
If we allow our hearts and minds to dwell on these personal, social, and international injustices, we will spend our lives in a state of constant and damaging agitation: fretfulness, anxiety, bitterness, anger, and so on, will be our constant and damaging companions. Our minds will darken, our hearts will despair, and our bodies will deteriorate too. We cannot expect to thrive physically if we are sinking and shrinking mentally and emotionally.
“It’s not fair!” but there is something we can do about it. We can “Delight ourselves in God and He will give us the desire of our hearts” (Ps. 37:4). So we have a choice, “Dwell on injustice or delight in God?” “The desire of your heart or depress your heart.” That’s what Psalm 37 sets before us.