We will try to make sense of these inquiries later, but for now it is only right for me to state my personal position on the question of fairness. I suspect you already know: the test is “not” fair.
This claim goes beyond the instruction of our parents who told us, “Life isn’t fair.” No, it isn’t. But it is important to know this is not the result of a universe out of control, or a God who doesn’t care. Rather, it is a result God’s purposeful design.
Does this bother you? Are you upset by the suggestion God could make things better if He wanted to, but doesn’t? Before you leave me, I need to point out the best two alternatives are that God can’t help us, or that He doesn’t exist at all.
I should return to my classroom reference before closing out this thought, lest you think my conclusion here gives us the right to be unjust toward others. I am convinced it is our moral duty to provide a quality education for every child in our society, and to create a level opportunity for every generation to pursue its dreams. But I do not assume for a moment things will turn out perfectly. There will be budget restraints and failed policies among educators. Children will come to the classroom with different abilities, and some will be seriously impaired by poor training at home or difficult circumstances over which they have no control. And while I have the greatest respect for teachers, experience has shown me some are more talented than others, and even the most gifted face personal struggles that can make them ineffective for a season.
People of all ages and in all walks of life speak of working with the “hand they are dealt.” While I don’t subscribe to this cold description of the human condition, it is an accurate expression of our response, and admission of inequality.
We must move on, and attempt to produce some clarity and direction. Before we do, however, I must challenge you to set aside any notion that anyone’s journey with the Lord will be fair. If we allow ourselves to get stuck on this false precept, we may never find our way back to the truths that have the power to save us.