I am kind of obsessed with Pride and Prejudice (which is going to be known as P&P, because that’s what the cool kids call it). My friends know that I have read the book several times and my family knows that I own both the two and a half hour version of the movie and the six hour version.
I love everything about it. I love the characters and I love the story, but mostly I love the writing. Jane Austen is a beautiful writer. I think most people would agree and if you don’t agree then don’t tell me about it because I would hate to lose you as a friend.
I think anyone who has read P&P would say that they relate to Elizabeth Bennett in at least one way. Whether it is her stubbornness or her humor or her unwillingness to settle for anything less than love, she has characteristics that most people would call admirable. And while I myself would love to believe that I am like Elizabeth, I find myself relating to Mr. Darcy just as much.
For those of you who are not quite as knowledgeable about P&P, and I am going to assume that you have just not read it in a while and not that you have never actually read it … because that is just a tragedy that I couldn’t bear to hear, Mr. Darcy doesn’t make the best first impression. He has very little to say and the words that do come out of his mouth are filled with arrogance.
But somehow, because she is a genius, Jane Austen makes you fall completely in love with Mr. Darcy by the end of the book. He is the perfect man. At one point Mr. Darcy tells Elizabeth, “My good opinion once lost is lost forever.”
I think so many people have that same standard for people. Replace “good opinion” with the word “trust.” I know that I have felt that way before. If I am going to trust you with something then you better not make me regret it. I have felt that way about plenty of people, but more than that I have felt that way about God.
I have recently come to understand something about myself. My love for God up until this point in my life has been conditional. I grew up in church and when I was younger I would have told you that I loved God more than I loved anything else. That I loved Him because He loved me and because He sent his son to die on a cross so that I may live life to the fullest.
But the second God let something bad happen to me, that love that I was so convinced I had for Him was replaced with anger. I had trusted that He was going to keep me safe from all harm and that He was going to protect me in any and every situation and the minute that I felt like He failed to do so I was done with that relationship. Because I had trusted Him and He had lost my trust.
It took me a long time to get over that anger and that hurt. I am still not completely over it. I still struggle with completely trusting Him and loving Him no matter the circumstances. I believe that the anger that I feel and the circumstances that I have overcome will eventually bring me closer to Him. I am already closer than I have been in a long time. I am learning to trust Him completely and that that trust can’t be conditional. I can’t give Him some parts of my life while keeping other parts to myself. That’s not how trusting fully works, as much as I wish it did.
So I am trying my hardest to not be like Mr. Darcy. To release my stubbornness and anger and to fully trust that God knows what is best in my life. To trust Him again.
Editor’s Note: Caitlin is a contributor to this blog, but isn’t the only writer whose words you may see here. To read more posts by Caitlin or to see the other writers, visit the authors’ categories in the menu at the top right corner of the screen.