If I heard it once, I heard it a thousand times throughout my life.
You know those little phrases that Mama's will often use to get their point across?
Well my Mama had a thousand of them. She had a saying for everything.
"Nothing's fair honey."
"Fairs come twice a year."
"County and State."
It was one of those things that just sticks with you in life.
I've spent most of my life trying to prove her wrong.
Trying to make my county and my state happen over here, at the very least, on a daily basis.
And there were days that those words rang true. And I would think to myself, maybe she was right.
Fairs only do come twice a year.
I often wondered at times what she really meant by that.
My Mama said what she thought. And then some.
Kind of like a bold New Yorker trapped in a southern woman's body.
You knew where you stood but you'd better brace yourself. She called a spade, a spade.
I'd rather hear that than the alternative any day. I'd rather hear the truth- plain and simple.
My grandmother was the exact same way.
And I just so happened to inherit that same lovely trait....
Although, after a lot of mistakes and some growing years and after throwing myself at the feet of Jesus a thousand times I've received the help I needed. I'm still a work in progress but now, I try to tell it like it is only when I'm asked to.
I know she had her share of things in life that were tragic. Really unfair things.
I wonder at times if that was what she was referring to...
As if to say, look honey, it hasn't worked out for our family yet.
It didn't work out for my Mama.
It didn't work out for me.
And it's not going to work out for you either.
So don't even think about getting your hopes up.
Maybe hoping to spare me any future disappointment...
Or maybe it was to soften the devastation, as if minimizing whatever crisis had hit, would help it all to somehow make sense.
As if to say...look, "fair" isn't something that happens in this house.
Or in this family.
Or in this lifetime.
Fairs are for the county and the state and that's the only kind of fair you are ever going to get.
I don't fault her or blame her.
I'm sure that she was trying to make sense of a lot of things in her own life.
I wasn't exactly the daughter Mothers dream of.
But sometimes parents can stunt a child's growth if they high jack their hope.
If we don't encourage and teach and offer anything any different than the way things have always been- then sometimes children can grow up and completely miss their calling, simply because it doesn't fit into whatever box or role or plan the family has always walked in.
History can sometimes repeat itself. But it doesn't have to.
We don't have to live the same life that generations before us have lived. We don't have to become bitter and cynical and mad at the world, always waiting for the next shoe to drop.
We do not have to live in a constant state of fear or excessive mourning.
Or spend our whole life "wishing for what never was."
We do not have to walk around believing that "fairs" only come twice a year.
(Or it's never going to happen for me, it's never going to be my turn.)
The enemy would love for every one of us to believe that lie.
After many years of living like that I decided a long time ago that I was going to go ahead and experience "fair" on a daily basis.
I'm going to ride the Ferris Wheel in life.
Whether people are really for me or not.
Whether people say what they really mean or not.
Whether the odds are stacked against me or not. I'm going to try. I have to.
I'm going to stand in line at the concession stand in life and see what the Lord has behind the counter for me. Instead of choosing to accept whatever others feel I should and should not receive in life because it doesn't seem to fit into their realm of possibility for me.
There may not always be things that I would like on the menu.
There may not always be cotton candy filled days.
But I know that He has a plan and a purpose.
Even in the midst of so many things I don't understand.
Even in the midst of some really unfair things and some tremendous heartache in life.
I know He has a ticket for me.
An entrance into a divinely appointed fairground filled with life lessons, character development opportunities and chances to cling to Him. Along with many enjoyable surprises as well.
I don't have to look longingly at everyone else's tickets.
I can wait my turn and know that I know that I know that my turn- my county and my state...
They are coming.
And it is going to be more than just twice a year.
And it will be for you as well....