Longing for what’s right

It’s hard to see how things sometimes unfold in our small church family. When one of our own loved brothers or sisters in Christ suffers we feel it. Hearts ache for them, concern often creeps in and we wonder how can we make it better. We wonder, “Where is your justice?” Can’t you make it better for them?
I wish I would it was still baffling to me why people would take advantage of other’s generosity or even take advantage of a loving heart. We’ve had that happen right here at our church, and just this last week! We live in a world that is sinful and so we cry “Where is your righteousness Lord?”
But then everyone is looking for justice- for themselves. No one likes to think they are bad and so they justify everything to make it seem good. Even the robber or the murderer can claim, “I live in a flawed system, It is due me,” or “it was in self-defense, or pay back.” Longing for what is right has some looking in the wrong places for it.
It was Martin Luther King Jr. who said in his famous “I have a Dream” speech-  “But let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream!” Amos 5:24. MLK had such stamina in looking for what was right and he looked in the right places. You notice how he held justice and compassion in tension with each other. He fought for what was right by disabling what was wrong. He had a Biblical view of justice.
Justice for him was not pay back for what people had done. It was no punative or violent. Justice meant setting everything right. He knew that God would bring what was right. In that he didn’t let the opposition determine how he would address this problem. It was not tit for tat, and eye for an eye. When he was attacked or hurt he simply held on to what was right- God’s Justice.
He knew God would set things right, and God did. The good we craved came when Christ rolled in and set us right with our heavenly Father. The horrible punishment of sin that we certainly deserved was paid for with a selfless sacrifice of his Son. Christ was our redeeming quality. We were made lovable! He took action to give us goodness. MLK stook on that as he fought.
There are still hard times in churches. There are still fights for civil liberties, but the great fight for justice is done and we can stand on that goodness. Fighting for what is right now means we stand on what God has given us! That fills us up to where, knowing we have justice, we begin to fight for the justice of others.
Yes, it hurts when dear ones suffer, so bring them to justice. Tell them it’s not right that death has taken it’s toll but that is why Jesus rose, so it would stop tolling. No, it’s not right when generosity is exploited, so bring the exploriter to justice. Teach them that reliance on God is far greater than relying on self. Inspire in them the sense of hope they crave.
It’s baffling how much people are missing when they don’t see justice flowing into their lives. We want to give them what is right and show them what is good. We can.  Tell them they are right to want what is good, so deconstruct what is bad and find your goodness in Christ.
God’s Peace
Pastor Kehl