It’s supposed to be a fair system, one which puts an end to arguments. One child cuts the cake, the other chooses the first piece. It should have worked. It’s not difficult to draw a line down the middle, but neither child was looking for fair. The trick was to cut the cake at a slant so one piece looks bigger, but is actually smaller. Both children sought the advantage and neither wanted mom cutting the cake because she might be fair. To be honest, neither wants more cake– just more than the other.
Nothing’s changed. Watch Congress redistrict the lines or nations draw up treaties. No one aims for fair and there are no straight lines. The Hatfields and McCoys keep fighting not to get even, but to get even plus a little more. “Ties,” snarls the football coach, “are like kissing your sister.”
The system favors the devious and that’s a problem. Baseball manager Leo Durocher observed, “Nice guys finish last.” So bad guys finish first?
“For the wicked boasts of the desires of his soul. His ways prosper at all times” (Psalm 10:3, 5), and for a time, it seems, the wicked win. That’s our system, the system of advantage, of fair plus a little more. “The one greedy for gain curses and renounces the Lord. In the pride of his face the wicked does not seek him; all his thoughts are, ‘There is no God’” (Psalm 10:3-4). We don’t want mom cutting the cake.
The fool says in his heart, “There is no God” (Psalm 14:1), and gets the bigger piece. But not the better piece, and that’s the secret. More cake doesn’t satisfy, it just makes you fat.
“The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup; you hold my lot. The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance” (Psalm 16:5-6).
My God, there is nothing in this world that satisfies me. For a brief time, I find something fun, but then I want something more or something else, and I spend my life looking. Until I found You, or I should say, You found me. I wasn’t looking for You, but when You showed up, suddenly there was peace and contentment, strength and worth, a hope and a future. Now I have nothing to gain, because You are all I seek. And I have nothing to lose, because You provide all I need. I have stopped looking and started living. The life You give is truly abundant and overflowing.
You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore (Psalm 16:11).