Recently I said to my bedridden newlywed husband that I wondered why things have turned out the way they have. He replied, “They haven’t turned out yet.”
It sounds like a Yogi Berraism, but he’s right. I was talking like a foolish woman who imagined she was in the last chapter of a tragedy when in fact I am only in the middle chapter of a comedy. When I say “comedy,” of course, I mean it in the Shakespearian way, not in the I Love Lucy way of a laugh a minute. An Elizabethan comedy is a play that has a happy ending, though there are lots of fingernail biting along the road to it. In Twelfth Night we are happy and relieved when the confusion is sorted out and Duke Orsinio is properly matched with Viola while Sebastian gets Olivia. But there was plenty of mess to slog through in between.
Same with our lives. For me to quip to my husband on his sick bed, “I wonder why things have turned out this way” is like Viola lamenting in Act 1 when her brother Sebastian is still lost at sea and she is in a jam because Olivia, who has fallen for her disguise as a man, has fallen in love with her.
Moral of the story: If you don’t like how your life is going, wait five minutes.
Life is always changing, and for those who love the Lord the change is always for our good:
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28).
This does not mean the good is obvious right away. But if you know the good part is coming, you can hang on through the scenes that resemble Viola running around with a heavy heart delivering love messages from the man she loves to the woman he loves, who in turn is mistakenly falling for her. What a mess.
The important thing is the ending—which is the promise to those who love the Lord. So tell the Lord you love Him today and that you are willing to suspend judgment till the last chapter.
For as Yogi Berra really did say, “It’s ain’t over till it’s over.”