1Th 2:3-4 “For the appeal we make does not spring from error or impure motives, nor are we trying to trick you. On the contrary, we speak as men approved by God to be entrusted…. We are not trying to please men but God, who tests our hearts.”
When I talk to Christian people doing business daily in the workplace, I hear of problems they often face because of their Christianity. Because of their faith in God and the compelling by the Word of God to live honestly and uprightly, they often feel that they are competing on an uneven playing field. The world doesn’t deal with honesty and fairness, yet they are expected to! Christians work hard and trust in God for their promotion and advancement while other people play “politics” and play up to the boss. Job estimators will bid on jobs that they want to win for their companies giving the best price they can give, while other companies pay money under the table to get the work. The list of ways worldly people compete unfairly is never-ending.
Too often we try to find “fair” out there but the truth is “fair” isn’t out there. Fair isn’t available because we live in a world run by the god of this world – Satan. He is the corrupter of anything and all that would be fair. Most of the world lies and cheats because they feel it’s the norm and the standard it takes to get by. The deluded standard creeps into every aspect of life – not just business. Most couples now-a-days live together in fornication even though the Bible says in Ephesians 5:3, “But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality – fornication, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people.” Christians have to work harder to remain pure while the world “parties” not paying attention to or caring about God’s standard for moral relationships or ethical thinking and behavior. Then what can really seem unfair is, it looks like they get away with it! Trust me no one will!
There are many ways people play unfair in their lives, manipulation being one of them. Manipulation is something that people in the world get caught up more than they realize. So do Christians. What is manipulation? It’s the influencing of or managing shrewdly or deviously to get a desired outcome. When people manipulate they are often dishonest, even if ever so slightly, for personal gain. Many people manipulate through lying only they don’t call it that. It’s rationalized as just “a slight exaggeration.”
When people have a situation that they want to go a specific way, but the honest facts don’t feel like they will have enough impact to draw their desired response, they exaggerate to persuade toward their desired response. A conversation might go like this. “Boss, no one likes the new office arrangement.” “Oh really? Tell me who said they don’t like the new office arrangement – give me their names.” “Well, I don’t know exactly who but a whole bunch of people said they don’t!” “Give me the names of three of thse people.” “Oh, never mind, I can see you aren’t even open to any feedback!”
Manipulators exaggerate or give false information to win their way. It’s not honest and it’s not right but it can get results. The method may be dishonest but results are what manipulators are after. They don’t care about what is right and just.
For Christians, we can’t play that way. We have to abide by God’s Word and do what’s right. Today’s Fresh Manna the Apostle Paul set the example for us. He says, “For the appeal we make does not spring from error or impure motives, nor are we trying to trick you. On the contrary, we speak as men approved by God to be entrusted…. We are not trying to please men but God, who tests our hearts.”
God wants us to be trustworthy with the truth, trust Him for the results, and then He will be able to ultimately work things out. He will make things fair. Prov 2:7-9 says, “The Lord holds victory in store for the upright, He is a shield to those whose walk is blameless, for He guards the course of the just and protects the way of His faithful ones. Then you will understand what is RIGHT AND JUST AND FAIR–every good path.”
If you are looking for “fair” in life, remember that in this world, fairness is only available from God. He alone has the knowledge of absolutes, right and wrong, and all necessary details. For us, much of fairness is a matter of perspective. We all simply do the best we can with the information we have. When my children say they want fair, what they are saying is they want equal treatment. That is difficult since what they need in not equal treatment. They themselves aren’t equal. They have different giftings, talents, and needs within their life’s destiny. It was up to Renee and my discretion to determine what was fair in our parenting years.
I have one son whom Renee spent more time helping with in his academic studies. Was she trying to give him more intimate help out of favoritism? No, his siblings didn’t need as much help. There were other things they needed.
There are some perceived injustices that God alone understands – usually having to do with reasons of His mercy to reach others. Some justice may be delayed until the final Day of Judgment. Then all injustices will be made right.
When as Christians, we have to deal fairly and do what is right in an unfair world, it can seem like we are going to end up on the short end of the stick. Don’t let the devil talk you into that lie. That’s not faith and we can not allow ourselves to think like that. Always act honestly and no matter what anyone else does, just do what’s right. Petition the Lord and He will help make things work for you. The fact is, WE have what some could call an unfair advantage. We are God’s children and we have His love, power, authority, help and many precious promises to help us in our time of need. That more than balances the scales!
In His Love,Pastor Tim Burt
http://readfreshmanna.blogspot.com/ Published by Pastor Tim Burt
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