Sometimes I have to remember that life isn’t a pity party. Literally, I sit down. Maybe in a bathroom stall at lunch. And then tell myself, “This isn’t a pity party. Now, what are you going to do?” Then I get back up and go back to work, but I flush the toilet so nobody thinks I was having an emotional breakdown at 30 on a mission trip in Guatemala. This isn’t hard. Tell the kids about mammals and reptiles, vitamin D and sunshine. Teach them how to study and be prepared. Make sure they all get lunch before they play.
It is exams. All the desks from Pre-K to 12th grade are lined up outdoors in the devotional area. Everybody is testing at the same time. Classical music is playing, but I can’t tell if it is sad or romantic by the notes being played. Kids are politely raising their hands to have their test questions clarified or their potential answers confirmed. In the near silence of our examinations, in the wide-open, outdoor arena that is our study hall, I am confused. I am here for a purpose, loving the present, but something nags at me from the past. An injustice for certain.
I am thankful that if I decide to use the hashtag blessed, I’m not just copying some celebrity who can afford every luxury–every new pair of kicks, every solid gold ring, every latest CD, car, or concert ticket. I’m thankful that at 30, God has given me wisdom (#blessed). The greatest wisdom I know in life is to forgive. It’s a lot easier said than done, right? Forgiveness isn’t, like, “Oh, sorry,” I bumped into someone at the Kohl’s checkout. And then the other person promptly says, “No worries.” Forgiveness is an active process.
Honestly, forgiveness is letting someone go of a debt that they owe. Forgiveness isn’t the price tag for justice. One doesn’t pay forgiveness and get justice. They aren’t even on the same rack. Yet, I know they are inseparable. In my own mind, I am wondering about the order of this business. Does justice come before or after forgiveness? I do not think justice comes without it. But, how does it all work?
As I see it, injustice occurs as a result of a power play. Justice without forgiveness is simply another power play. It where the 21 grams of our souls remain–with unforgiveness. Like I am wondering if that is what God is working on in my own life. I tell myself as I’m thinking about it, “Justice comes later on if one keeps chasing it.” That what I really want no matter how long it takes. In the meantime, I will seek the wisdom that allows me to forgive the past which I cannot change. If I don’t ever have justice, at least I have dignity.
“Treasures of wickedness profit nothing,
But righteousness delivers from death.
The Lord will not allow the righteous soul to famish,
But He casts away the desire of the wicked.”
“The blessing of the LORD makes one rich,
And He adds no sorrow to it.”