Now when the first came, they thought they would receive more; but each of them also received the usual daily wage. Matthew 20:10 

My brother is five years younger. As children, we were quite concerned with fairness. “Fair” meant my brother could never have more than I did, and I could never have less than he. Ever. Mercifully—and to the delight of our parents—we left that phase behind…for the most part. As adults, we’ve become the best of friends.

Truth be told, we all are easily caught up in defining fairness in our relationships. Who among us hasn’t glanced over the neighbor’s fence at the shiny new car, or compared salaries, or questioned a colleague’s promotion? When fairness becomes merely a metric to measure how we stack up against the next person, it loses its transformative power. And we remember why there’s a commandment about covetousness.

By God’s standard, fairness is about treating others the way God treats us. It’s about realizing that God loves everyone in all of creation in the same way that God loves you—and then acting like you really believe in the truth of that love.

MOVING FORWARD: Go beyond fairness today. Give a gift of love and encouragement to someone who might not have earned it, but always deserves it.