Lately I have been thinking on the idea, that I (or people in general) deserve to be treated fairly. Then I thought to myself… what is fair? Is life fair? As my only perspective of fairness comes from my personal experiences, living on a planet where I feel that there are a lot of natural things which occur not just in humanity, but also in nature, that I would dare to say are seemingly unfair.
Is it fair to the many wild animals facing extinction, that humans are ruining their natural habitat? Is it fair to the child born in North Korea, a communist nation, that others are born free? Is life fair to the child born with genetic-related problems, as they consistently face serious health issues most never will face. Or, is it fair to many of the people who sowed seeds and gave their lives to promote peace, love, unity, and fought for my rights to be treated fairly… that they died before they could reap the full fruit of their labor? No, certainly life is not always fair; there are certainly some people who are more blessed than others at birth.
This past Saturday afternoon I attended an event that called people of faith, specifically in our state of Louisiana, to come together and pray to God for our nation. The event was called The Response. I was one of the maybe 3-5 thousand people who participated in it throughout the day. Governor Jindal was there and he gave his testimony. That was amazing to see! Just to have a Governor/politician speak openly on his love for God was amazing to witness, as most government officers stay away from discussing their faith openly. I know that took a lot of courage… and regardless if there were some underlying political reasons that influenced his involvement at the event, I still respect Governor Jindal for having the courage to openly confess his faith and desire to pray for our nation.
So… now that I gave you the backdrop, let me tell you what happened to me on that beautiful afternoon. (The event was held at the PMAC on the LSU campus) As I was walking up the ramp towards the entry door, with other people walking in front of me and behind me, two security guards point me out and say to me, “You can’t bring your backpack inside the auditorium. You either have to leave it outside or go put it in your car or something… but you can’t go inside with your backpack. It’s the rules.”
I suddenly stop to give them my attention… and though I saw women walking in with purses, just as big as my backpack, and other people walking in with backpacks, I simply decide to let it go and without any dispute, I say “Yes sir.” and I walk back and place my backpack in my car.
Leaving my car, I decide to bring a little 8 ounce bottle of apple juice with me into the auditorium, as it was in my car. Now, as I begin to walk past the same two security guards, they stop me again, and say “Hey sir, you can’t bring any bottles inside the auditorium. You have to throw it away or leave it outside. Sorry that’s the rules.”
Now I see other people walking around not more than 15 feet ahead of me with bottled water, and I even see one of my friends with some popcorn… though without any hesitation I throw my little bottle of apple juice inside the nearest trash can. And the security guards granted me permission to enter pass them.
If someone was to ask me… “Jason, in that situation, do you think you were treated fairly?” I would have to say, “NO! I do not.”. I feel I was picked out and treated unfairly. If I could not bring my backpack inside, and others could, what’s wrong with my backpack? If I could not bring my little bottle of apple juice inside, why should anyone else be allowed to bring any beverages inside?
That situation caused me to think about fairness, and my expectations on desiring to be treated fairly. I really feel that the world is against me sometimes. The strength inside me that pushes me to persevere through it all is constantly being tested. “Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil. For You are with me.”
The world is trying to put you down, and it’s not fair. But, let me encourage you… don’t let it get the best of you. Saturday, even though I felt like I was treated unfairly, I didn’t let it get to me. I didn’t disrespect anyone and I actually enjoyed the time at the prayer rally. Though I’m not happy all the time, I do love Pharrell Williams song, “Happy”, and I love that lyric… “can’t let nothing get me down” ;).