Monday, July 14, 2008

But, that's not fair!

Have you noticed how obsessed we are with all things justice? Just take the top television programs, for instance. There's CSI, CSI Miami, CSI NY, CSI Alaska - okay, maybe I made the last one up, but you know they've considered it. There's Law and Order, Law and Order SVU, Law and Order Criminal Intent, NCIS, and my personal favorite, Criminal Minds. When you consider these as a group, reality TV doesn't seem quite so dominant. We are crazy for tales of just and unjust, right and wrong, fair and unfair. The obsession is passed on from our elders at an early age. Visit any playground in our country today, and you will inevitably hear it over and over again ... "But, that's not fair!" We learn very early to scream foul play, and most of us go on doing it loudly for the rest of our lives.

In fact, if we put forth the least bit of effort, I suspect that most of us could recall several times in the past few days, or maybe even in this day alone, when we exclaimed, "But, that's not fair!" What I find so interesting about this is how it dominates our culture, even Christian culture, but Christ never said it! Of course, if anyone ever had reason to make this exclamation, Jesus Christ did! Born to die, falsely accused, spat upon, mocked, scourged, and charged with bearing the sin of the world - yet sinless Himself. Indeed, He had good reason. As Oswald Chamber's pointed out, though, Jesus never looked for justice for Himself, but He never ceased to give it to others.

Regarding my cancer and whatever blindsiding trial you might be facing, it is so reflex to exclaim, "But, that's not fair!" I could go about my days in a perpetual childhood tantrum (and, I reserve the immaturity to do so on some days) mired in all that unfairness, but ... that's the problem. I would be mired. I couldn't really go anywhere. The thing is, we spend so much of our lives griping about fair and unfair when God never promised fair. Ask Job or Uriah or ... Jesus! What He did promise, as we've discussed before, is to be with us wherever we go.

I'll admit, there are days when I want to scream ... this isn't fair! I want my taste buds back! I want these sores gone! Get this mucous out of my mouth! Get this growth off my neck! Get this tube out of my stomach! I want pizza, I want Cokes, I want ice cream and cookies and cheeseburgers - this isn't fair! I'll probably have a few more of those days. I hope, however, that I (we) will be able to stop looking for fair in all circumstances. Rather, I pray that complete trust will replace tantrums. Our precious Father is good, and He will not leave us.

I love all of you very much, and I appreciate your prayers. I DO feel them. My weekend was dark at times, but God remained as He always does. Your prayers are priceless.

Now, I must ask you to pray for another. My dear friend, Brian Carroll (Elizabeth Pugh Carroll's husband), learned that his dad has been diagnosed with cancer just underneath his nose that has spread into the nasal cavity and into his cheeks. The bone is involved. Surgery at Vanderbilt is pending. Brian and Elizabeth have asked for God's will to be done and for all involved to be drawn closer to Him. Of course, they also pray for healing, but they also ask for peace with whatever God has planned. Please join me in praying for Mr. Carroll.

God's best for all of you.


XieXie said...

Thanks Daniel. I needed to hear that today in my own life. We're still praying for you and now for Mr. Carroll. shay

ashley said...

What a wonderful teacher and encourager you are! God has big plans for you my friend! I love you and continue in prayer for your healing!

Tammy said...

Daniel, Once again you have said just what I needed to hear today! I will keep you in extra thought and prayer tomorrow as you go thru tx and will also place Mr. Carroll and his family on my prayer list. Take care and keep the faith. In Him, Tammy

Richard said...


Thank you for maintaining this blog to help others find encouragement in the Lord's word. Your good friend Heather B. has told her Sunday School class about you, and I must admit your blog has been amazing to read.

The grace that the Lord grants us is truly priceless.

You are in our prayers and please continue to share your testimony to strengthen others. I will also add Mr. Carroll to my prayers.

Blessings from Raleigh, NC.

Anonymous said...

Thank you, Daniel for being honest about your heart and also pointing us back to truth. We do not live it perfectly, but it is truth. I am reminded to cling to him in every frustration and trial (piddly or life altering). I totally needed that reminder today. Praying for you
Jen Pinkner

Leah said...

Daniel, thanks for keeping us up to date. Truly we say "life isn't fair" all the time. It's with matters like cancer we REALLY know this. It's amazing that as you go through so much that we can never comprehend you still teach us and encourage others. You'll never know how many folks you have encouraged and taught throughout this whole ordeal. You are always in my prayers.
Leah M.

The Moon Family said...

The timing was great in regards to this post. While driving yesterday, I was pondering the entire concept of 'life not being fair'. Not only do we often complain about the big things in life not being fair, we also complain about the small things as well. Thanks for the great reminder. Thank you for sharing about Mr. Carroll as well so we can pray for he and his family.

mypassionisjesus said...

I am so blessed by this comment. The Lord has been dealing with my heart about Mercy and Justice and this just tied in with what He has been speaking to me. Thank you so much for sharing your heart. You are a mighty conduit for the Lord and you give Him much Glory through your life. Your suffering indeed is not in vain by any means.

Staci Dunavant

joy said...

Daniel, I am truly amazed by your strength and faithfulness. I will continue to pray for you and trust that God will bless you during this trial.