There are so many things in my life right now that could tear me down and make me crumble into a bitter mess.
It was almost easy when I lost everything, to be grateful for every. last. thing. I lost everything due to my own choices, and although some of the consequences were uncalled for and unjustly bestowed, and were very unfair, I was humbled by the mercy shown to me and the grace freely given. That made it so easy to be incredibly grateful for the tiniest of blessings.
But, right now, I haven’t done anything wrong to deserve the unfair treatment. In fact, I’ve gone above and beyond in most circumstances. And I am still on the bottom of the totem pole. I am still running the race and finishing in last place, or at least in 2nd place.
Life is not fair.
And I am the older brother.
I am awakened to the reality that I have been caught stomping my feet on the sidelines. I say internally, “But I have served over and over, given over and over, I have loved and adored, I’ve worked hard, I’ve kept my mouth shut when I could have screamed!” And the ugly grows.
And life is not fair.
The snide, biting comments said through self-righteous eyes. The attitude towards selfish younger generation that makes me want to disappear into hermitville. The pout because I don’t have this or that. The thoughts that creep into the crevices about her irresponsibility, their marriage, his lack of gratitude and helpfulness, those who are less-than-fill-in-the-blank. I should be flat on my back from bitterness and crabby and pharisaical self-righteousness.
But no. I am blessed. I have a great job. I have some family members who care about me. I have a husband who loves me and tells me many times a day and showers me with the affection I so craved for many years. I have opportunities to serve and to give and to spread Jesus through action and attitude. I have a home and nice clothes and a young CASA girl who lets me spend time with her to fill my heart pain with love. I have the most wonderful church that feeds me with hope and challenges me to humble myself, a church that provides weekly opportunities to give and to serve, a church that rescued me and welcomed me as a broken, only to offer acceptance and healing through gentle restoration.
Life is definitely not fair. I do not deserve the blessing.
But God, the Father who loves me as I am, not as I should be, runs to me with open arms, welcoming me and showering me with grace and mercy and continues to bless me abundantly.
Life is not fair. And for that today, I am humbled. I am remorseful. I am human. I am forgiven. And I am grateful.