In part 1 we talked about understanding what God has to say about loving one another. This week let’s talk about fairness.
If you, as the parent, are trying to keep everything “fair” and equal then you are taking away an opportunity for them to learn to handle when things don’t go their way. OR when they get more then their share….how to be gracious and generous.
God isn’t concerned with fairness. He is all about justice. What’s the difference? Well it’s huge.
Fairness: Fairness is subjective based on what one person feels. Take games, for example. We play a lot of games in our house. Depending on what we play there is always someone more talented at the skill required for that game. Fairness would say we should handicap that person somehow to make it fair for everyone. Maybe they get less time to fill in their answers or they have to go 10 extra spaces on the board. It wouldn’t be fair for Mr. Smarty to play with the same rules as everyone else or he would win.
Fairness tries to make everyone equal and we simply aren’t equal. If you try to be a fair parent, you are causing some child to shrink by holding them back and others to be stunted because there is no reason for them to try to improve.
Justice: Justice is like gravity. It holds us all to the same ground with the same pull no matter who we are or what we need. It doesn’t care if we’re the youngest or the weakest or the loudest complainer. Same rules for everyone. If you jump in the air you will fall back to the ground.
Justice is holding people to the consequences of their own talents and actions. It is winning a game because everyone played by the same rules and you were just better or luckier. If your brother always wins then it’s motivation for you to improve your skills, practice and get stronger in that area.
In other words, fairness creates equality by comparing us to each other, justice creates equality by holding us all to the same outside standard.
What am I getting at you may wonder? Well it’s this. Let your kids be different. Let some succeed and others fail. Comfort them, help them up when they fall, but don’t try to soften the pain of the loss. It is necessary for them to grow. And also praise your child’s successes, but remind them of where that success comes from. God gaveth and He can taketh away.
Then teach them to appreciate each other’s strengths and help each other when they’re weak. Don’t teach them that they should be equal….it will only serve to damage their relationships.
That’s what it’s all about friends. Justice and kindness.
Micah 6:8 “He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?”