Disclaimer: To all the great theologians that read my blog, warning. This entry may not be the most precise in its theology, but it will not be heresy.
For my birthday, my best friend, Christie, gave me Disney's Cinderella on DVD. I have been a Disney fan for as long as I can remember, and the story of Cinderella was always one of my favorites. My Mom used to get me every Disney video the moment it made it out of the Disney vault (wherever that is!), so it was also special that Christie chose a gift that my Mom would have gotten me had she been here to celebrate. If you love Disney movies, this one is a must have, especially for the romantic. The DVD with all the extras is well worth spending the time to watch.
As I sat down to watch it a week ago, I couldn't wait to really get into it as an adult. The movie opens with the story of Cinderella - her Mom passed away when she was very young, her Dad remarried then passed away, and now she lives with her stepmother and two stepsisters, basically as a slave in her own home. The next scene shows her waking up in the morning to all her little animal friends and breaking into the famous song, "A Dream is A Wish Your Heart Makes." It's funny how God uses even fairy tales to get my attention. I thought, "Do I wake up with that positive of an attitude every morning?" Here's a gal who is living in the dungeon of a huge house and spends her days and nights toiling away at the mercy of her so-called family. Yet, she wakes up to the new day dancing around her bedroom and singing about her dreams and wishes. I normally wake up and hit the snooze multiple times, think about what I have to do for the day, stress about what I didn't get done yesterday, and stop long enough for a quick quiet time that slips from my memory by lunchtime.
Even though Cinderella lived under harsh circumstances, she didn't allow her environment to dictate her attitude. I find myself not only allowing my environment to rule my mood, but also allowing circumstances to influence my actions. This revelating scene caused me to remember a scripture I've known since childhood - "This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it." - Psalm 118:24. I'd do well to recite that scripture a few times before hitting the snooze button.
Although it's a fairy tale, this story is full of other great reminders of my faith - the idea of the fairy godmother coming at Cinderella's lowest point, just as God comes in at 11:59 when we're faced with midnight doom. Or how anything we dream of or we do are merely rags, and God can wash over us with the redeeming blood of Christ and make us a new creature, just like Cinderella on her way to the ball. I chuckled when the King described the Prince's experience when meeting Cinderella, "He will catch a glimpse of her from across the room. The one predestined to be his bride." Ok, Prince Charming's family are reformed theologians.
I've always claimed to have the heart of Cinderella...always wishing, always dreaming, always hoping. Now, I'm going to strive to maintain that faithful attitude because I have a whole lot more to be hopeful for than a fairytale princess.