Have you ever been treated so unjustly that sitting still while thinking about it is virtually impossible? That has been me for uncountable minutes over the last couple of weeks. The feeling is so strong that I have no idea what to do with it, for there is nothing to be done. What’s done is done and there’s no apology coming. But the feelings bubble up inside of me, making me squirm. And yet there is nothing to do but deal with it. That’s really where the problem is, how does one deal with emotions like these? I have tried letting them flow out of me during physical exercise, but the words circle my mind, which end up fuelling the fire and not putting it out. I have written countless scripts in my head for what I would say, but it is of no use. And so here I sit, telling God my woes, asking him for help.
I would be lying if I said living and working on the ship is easy, not only can the actual work be tiring and busy but life outside of work is like nothing you’ve ever experienced unless you’ve lived in constant community.
Firstly, I live with three other women, all of whom I met after they’d arrived on board. So knowing nothing about them previously we’ve been thrown together into a tiny space, sleeping in bunk beds, breathing the same air, sharing a bathroom and a common space at the back of the cabin (for which I am VERY thankful, as many cabins do not have this!). But finding time alone can be a great challenge!
Secondly, the dining room where we serve our own food and eat, I also share with up to 400 others. There are set meal times and if you come outside of those hours, there is no food or you can cook your own in the crew galley. So if you’d like to have a quiet lunch, you have to leave the dining room and find your own space. The cafe became a regular eating space of ours more than a year ago now, but since someone put a foosball table in that same area, it’s become a battle ground during the dinner hour with the school kids raising the noise level dramatically.
Although there are obvious perks to community and amazing people here that I love to live life with, sometimes it is also pure challenge. And so I sit before God.
When I think about it, sitting before God is right where I should be. No matter the circumstance, unjust or not, it is still where my face needs to fall. And when I asked he said, Walk with integrity Deb. That is my challenge, to walk every day with integrity even when I have horrible words swirling around my mind, or someone tests my patience to the limit, or the noise is too much to think, or that caregiver baby just will not stop crying. I must speak with love and bring life. To be a woman of integrity despite any circumstance, that is my challenge.