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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

It's Not Fair...

It's not fair....

My mantra. My curse.

"It's not fair" can sum up most of my problems and issues.

It's not fair that certain people (who shall remain nameless) are total assholes and still get the world handed to them on a silver platter.

It's not fair that I work with people who don't respect me, no matter what I do.

It's not fair that I won't be able to give my kids the childhood that I had.

It's not fair that some girls don't have cellulite.

It's not fair that people can say anything they want about you behind your back and will never be held accountable for it.

You get the picture.

The trouble with "It's not fair" is that it is a useless thought, and frankly emotion. "It's not fair" is a state of mind. A dwelling. It's dark, it's lonely, and it wants to keep you there forever.

The fact is, just like your mother told you a billion times, life isn't fair.

"Wow! Really?? I feel so much better now! Life isn't fair...who knew? I'm going to go catch a butterfly now, so I can release it under a rainbow made of laughter ..."

Yeah, I know. It doesn't help to hear that. So now I am trying to think of it a different way. When we say, "It's not fair," what we are really saying is, "God doesn't know what he is doing."

Wait.

What?

Yeah, that got my attention too.

Either God has a plan or he doesn't. I think it's pretty fair to say that God not only has a plan, but a pretty darn good one. I don't know about your family, but when my family would leave to go on vacation, we always had to turn around at least three times to go back for things we'd forgotten. Even after that, I'm pretty sure we always had to buy things that we had left behind once we got to our destination.

Imagine trying to create an entire planet of creatures with free wills and destinies for centuries of existence...without forgetting something.

"Oops! Ozone layer! I knew I forgot something. Sorry about the melted flesh, guys, I'll go back and get it."

It wouldn't have been pretty.

Sometimes, though, don't you feel like God forgot about you?

Um..hello? Didn't you know I wanted that job? Why'd you give it to him?

Not fair.

Um...yeah....that was supposed to be my body type. Why'd I get stuck with this crap?

Not fair.

Um...I'm pretty sure that I should be getting paid more. That guy gets paid more. What about me?

Not fair.

On and on and on.

We never consider for a moment that maybe we got passed over for the job, because there is a better one that is going to come along in two weeks. Or maybe we didn't get Nicole Kidman's body type, because the man we are meant to spend the rest of our life with happens to like ours better. Or maybe that extra money we think we need right now is just more useless junk in the garage that we'll have to clean up.

Instead, we let the storm clouds of self pity settle over us. We throw a few things in a bag: old wounds that haven't healed, grudges we've held way too long, and maybe even some self indulgent bad habits for good measure, and we check right into Motel Unfair. You won't enjoy your stay.

I think even more dangerous than saying God doesn't know what he's doing, is the other true meaning behind "It's not fair", which is this: God isn't good.

If we measure things by our own very human, very judgmental, very narrow view of the universe, I think it would be fair to say that God isn't good.

People are starving.
My car has a dent.
The economy sucks.
Pamela Anderson has her own TV show now.

Not good.
Not good.
Not good.
Not good.

Fortunately for the world, God's goodness exists no matter what our pathetic, petty, picayune scales might say to the contrary. Maybe if we would step outside of Motel Unfair for five minutes, we would see it staring us in the face.

I know I have not spent my last night in Motel Unfair. I'm sure I haven't unpacked my bag of self-pity for good.

But at least now I can see the exit sign.

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