Infuriating Unfairness

READ ADDRESS BY ELDER RENLUND

You are not the first and you will not be the last to experience infuriating unfairness. Just as Elder Renlund reminded us at the beginning of his address that feelings of unfairness are “as old as mankind”, I wanted to address this first. You are not alone in wondering why bad things happen to good people and good things happen to bad people. You are also not alone in the frustrations of it. Often, these types of circumstances are inexplicable, making it very difficult for our mortal minds to make sense of it. Thankfully, we have a Savior that not only “understands unfairness”, He has the “power to provide a remedy.”

A selfless act of excruciating unfairness. I had never thought of the Atonement of Jesus Christ as unfair until Elder Renlund brought this to my attention. So much of Christ's suffering was unfair and inexplicable, yet He clung to the bigger plan—the greater perspective—of His Father. And because of His selfless act we can cling to the knowledge that He knows the intricacies of being misunderstood and mistreated, and the complexities of being at the mercy of someone's else's poor use of agency. These unique and messy emotions were “absorbed” in Him, that we might “have peace in this world and be of good cheer."

Catching stones. We all loved this visual from Elder Renlund, when he spoke of catching stones that are thrown at others— specifically the accused, the vulnerable, and the disadvantaged. It is heroic. It is selfless. It is the ultimate act of human kindness and compassion. Yet I think we can all agree, it is easier said than done. The natural man wants to maintain complete fairness, justice, and sure consequences. But ultimately, it is not our place to judge. We are encouraged to exemplify Christlike love and grace, forgiveness and compassion, empathy and understanding. We all make mistakes, we all fall short, we are all victim to mortal frailties. We are only making this earthly experience more difficult if we continue to stand on opposing sides, pointing fingers and casting stones. It should be US against the adversary, US against mortality, US against inequality and unfairness—never against each other.

Quotes

"In unfair situations, one of our tasks is to trust that “all that is unfair about life can be made right through the Atonement of Jesus Christ.” Jesus Christ overcame the world and “absorbed” all unfairness. Because of Him, we can have peace in this world and be of good cheer.

"How we deal with advantages and disadvantages is part of life’s test. We will be judged not so much by what we say but by how we treat the vulnerable and disadvantaged.”

Affirmation

Though I may not understand the unfairness of mortality, I know that my Savior does. His suffering and love holds the remedy for each of us to be of good cheer, even still.

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