Today is National Talk Like A Pirate Day. No really, apparently it is. I discovered this amazing tid bit of glorious holiday-ness when I was in college. So speak with pirate-speak, me matey. Strrrretch out yer “arrrrrrrrrs” in everrrrrrry worrrrrrd you use. Yell “Aye” and “Nay” as often as you can. And, if you’rrrrre super-clever and piratey you’ll slip the quote, “I disincline to acquiesce to your request” at least thrrree times into yerrr speak.
But really. I’ve felt ratherrr pirrrratey (annnd that’s annoying) for the last three or four weeks. No, I’m not wearing large gold hoop earrings, I don’t have a strange urge to cover my hair with a bandanna, my personal hygiene is at normal levels, and I don’t have large, length-of-my-leg knives (otherwise known as swords) on a belt, bruising my hip.
No, I’ve been feeling piratey in the sense that I’m rather envious of some of my friends. I want what they want, and I even have moments when I am green-eyed envious enough to want to just take it. Not that I could. I look at their lives, their relationships, their houses, their careers, and I get envious. I just… I somehow foolishly thought I’d be where they are at this point in my life. Well, no, that’s not true. I thought I’d be living in the middle of Africa (somehow still with my curling iron) teaching missionary kids. And I’m not doing that either.
Instead I’m in my early thirties, going to school to get a Masters that does not guarantee me a job (and definitely not a well-paying one). I don’t have my own place. I nanny for a living. I’m crying a lot recently. And romantically, well I’m bust.
The thing is, on an intellectual level, I know I’m exactly where I’m supposed to be. I wouldn’t give up a single year or experience. Looking back, God has obviously written my story, bringing me here, now, to this pretty painful moment (okay, not JUST to this moment, but to this season of life). And I know good things are going to come of this time. And I know I need to stay here, in this pain, in this confusion, frustration and loneliness. I shouldn’t run from it. I shouldn’t dwell in it, but I shouldn’t ignore it either. I’m here for a reason. I have lessons to learn here. There are wonderful, joyful memories to be had here. I need to stay and search for them.
I can’t dwell in the familiarity of the past, and I shouldn’t escape to the mystery of the future.
But my heart…well, my heart is pretty raw right now. In my envy of those around me, I forget what I know about the character of God. I forget that He is good (or I run to my “well, God’s good is different than ours” speech). I forget that He is righteous, and jealous, and can get angry when His children are hurt or get distracted by smaller gods. I forget so quickly how holy He is. I forget that He is loving. I forget that He has placed the passions and desires within my heart for a reason – whether or not I ever actually experience those passions and deep desires becoming fulfilled. I forget that He is GOD. That He can make anything – ANYTHING – happen, that He has a reason for everything (even in my piddly little life). I forget that He moved Heaven and Earth with His love in order to redeem me. I forget. I forget all that He has given me (really, I have lived an incredible life). I forget that He holds me, that He knows how many hairs are on my head, and that He cherishes every tear I cry.
I forget that He loves me better than anyone else ever has, can, or will. And that as He is the one in charge of my story, He’s writing the best version – director’s cut – of said story. I need to trust that He’s got this, that the desires in me will either fade away, or be fulfilled and either way they should send me to Him, not to staring at what my friends have.
As long as I don’t have the green, envious eyes of a pirate, life is good.
But even better – GOD is good, all the time.