December 8, 2013 by

Struggles With Injustice


Categories: Rantings, Things that Will Probably Get Me In Trouble

Can I be honest? (I’m going to anyway, so you might as well say yes.)

As much as I try to keep a good attitude about life in general, sometimes I still chafe at injustice.

I don’t like when injustice happens. I don’t like it when it happens to others, but especially not when it happens to me. (‘Cause like most humans, I’m selfish that way.) I understand the phrase “judge not,” and I understand that justice delayed is not justice denied. That’s what helps give me the grace to leave vengeance to the Lord, and to be (mostly) gracious when something unjust happens. I truly do believe that God is just, and He is fully capable of making sure everything settles out in the end.

But sometimes I get impatient at His patience with others. Annoyed, even. 🙂

I’m not sure why this is on my mind this morning–this rambling isn’t really even about anything that happened recently. I’m just pondering stuff, and I’m realizing that when I get in a certain mood, I simply have no tolerance for injustice that in my view has still gone unanswered. So since this is my blog, I get to vent a little. 🙂 Sometimes I still just struggle with injustice.

I struggle with the injustice of feeling exiled from the greater Christian community when I didn’t really do anything worth being alienated. I struggle with the fact that I felt I had to walk away from institutional Christianity when in fact institutional Christianity was in the wrong. Then, I get labeled a wounded prodigal for walking away. That’s unjust. I don’t like it.

I struggle with the injustice of being alienated from the only platform of ministry where I felt truly at home, not because I did anything wrong, but because I couldn’t stomach the politics associated with being on that platform.

I struggle with the injustice of being made a convenient scapegoat for other people’s crap, simply because I chose to step away rather than expose the other person’s sin. In my absence, the other gets off scot free while I get blamed for the breach of relationship. (This has happened more than once both to me and to my family, both in personal and in church situations. It still roils me to think about it.)

I struggle with the injustice of suffering ill treatment or slander from others with malice and/or jealousy in their hearts, and having to watch as they never get confronted for it. Meanwhile, I somehow manage to get taken to task for the smallest infractions of protocol. How does that work?

I struggle with the injustice of often feeling I have to restrain my tongue while others can apparently say whatever they want to me and mine, seemingly without consequence. (Maybe that’s even why I started blogging, just to have a place to speak my mind.)

Of course, I realize as I write this how much of a baby I must sound. There are others who have suffered far more injustice in life than I have. For example, I’ve never been denied a job because of the color of my skin; I’ve never been denied fair pay because of my gender, nor have I been forbidden to speak on a platform because of my gender. I’ve never been harassed by the police for being a person of color walking in a neighborhood of mostly whites.  I’ve never been enslaved. I’ve never been imprisoned nor had my life threatened because of my faith. I’ve never been denied basic necessities or been relegated to poverty because I was not born in the right caste. Compared to these injustices, I’ve had it easy.

But injustice, large or small, still hurts. It still makes you feel powerless, vulnerable. Suffering more or less due to a particular injustice does not make the injustice okay.

My son The Director has a particular hatred for injustice. He despises it anytime he sees it, whether it happens to him or to someone else. He gets livid over it. While He is a believer, a lot of his own personal distaste for institutional Christianity stems from the fact that he got a front row seat to watch his parents endure innumerable injustices in the ministry. I chuckle a little inside when I see his vivid reactions to injustice, simply because his passion is unfiltered. I don’t blame him; I feel the same way, mostly. I just have a few years on him, a little more maturity that enables me to take it a little more in stride.

And don’t get me wrong; most of the time I can take injustice in stride. I can be philosophical about it, and I be reminded by the apostle Peter of how suffering for what is good brings glory to God, and what injustices Jesus endured on my account. (1 Peter) I can remind myself that God is both just and merciful, and that others who commit injustice are in just as much need for His mercy as I am. I realize that as a broken human on this planet, I have also committed injustices against others, and some of these that I know about still haunt me at times. I realize that my own brokenness is precisely why I cannot be the one to render justice–only Someone who is perfect is qualified to do that. And so, most of the time, I am able to surrender myself to the will of God, forgive, and go on with my life, believing with all my heart that the scales will balance before it’s all over.

But just because I can deal with injustice–that doesn’t mean I have to like it. And I don’t. Just wanted to throw that out there.

Anyone relate? What do you struggle with in regard to injustice?

Musician. Composer. Recovering perfectionist. Minister-in-transition. Lover of puns. Hijacker of rock song references. Questioner of the status quo. I'm not really a rebel. Just a sincere Christ-follower with a thirst for significance that gets me into trouble. My quest has taken me over the fence of institutional Christianity. Here are some of my random thoughts along the way. Read along, join in the conversation. Just be nice.

2 Responses to Struggles With Injustice

  1. Living Liminal

    Do I struggle with injustice? Yes.

    I hate the fact that countless more are being abused and driven out of churches owned by man. And the damage is enabled by people who just don’t want to know…

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