I should have spent last night writing, but I was so tired I didn’t think it would be a good idea. So I decided to watch a movie instead, and what I ended up watching was a little different than my usual fare. I love movies with a lot of action but last night I watched Ever After, which is a realistic take on the story of Cinderella. If you haven’t seen it, you should. It’s a really good movie.
What is it about fairytales that catch our interest? I mean, even I love them, and I prefer movies with car chases and things that blow up. But there is something about fairytales like Snow White and Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty that fascinate me. Maybe I’m a hopeless romantic and I just refuse to admit it (that’s probably likely). But I guess what I love most about fairytales is that they usually involve someone common being raised to the rank of someone important because they were loved.
Fairytales usually work according to a formula. Usually the princess is a beautiful person inside and out, and the handsome prince comes along and — even though it’s inappropriate for him to love someone of lower status — he does anyway. And in spite of all opposition, it all works out in the end, and they live happily ever after.
Now, granted, I would love to visit Cinderella and Prince Charming a year or two into their marriage and see how happily ever after is working out for them. In general, most fairytale relationships (if they were real) would fall apart, mainly because they’re based on looks. I mean think about Prince Charming and Cinderella. How would that even work? She’s been used to scrubbing floors all her life. How would she truly adjust to being a princess? And she may be beautiful, but she probably snores. And I’m sure that would take some getting used to. My point here is that no one lives happily ever after in this world. It’s too broken for that. But that’s a topic for another post. What I really want to focus on is the fact that the prince who is above everyone else chose to love someone who was beneath him. That is the very foundation of many fairytales, and that’s what I thought about when I read the verse this morning.
1 John 4:10
10 This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.
God didn’t have to love us. He didn’t have to sacrifice anything for us. After He made us and we turned our backs on Him, He had every right to drop us and let us flounder and rot and die alone. But He didn’t. Even though He could have left us to die, He chose to send Jesus to save us.
That sounds an awful lot like a fairytale story to me, except that this story is true.
I don’t know how many times people have told me that the Bible is a love letter from God, but I guess I never really thought about it in the context of the whole story being something like a fairytale. How cool is that? God telling us the story of His love for us. What He’s done to be with us. What He’s done to redeem us?
Don’t get me wrong. I hesitate to compare anything in the Bible to a fairytale lest someone misunderstand me and think I’m saying it is a fairytale. It’s not. The Bible is true. But I’m wondering if the concept of someone of high rank and status redeeming someone of low rank and status didn’t come from the Bible to begin with. I’ve always said that every story ever written has its foundations in the Bible. So I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s what inspired the people who created our much beloved fairytales.
I was the lowest of the low, a sinner and a fool, and even though God could have left me behind, He didn’t. He came back for me and through His love, He has made me a princess in His kingdom. I am the daughter of the King, and not just a king. The King of Kings and Lord of Lords. And I love Him because He loved me first, with real love, sacrificial love.
If that’s not the stuff of fairytales, I don’t know what is. And what’s even better is that this story really will end happily ever after.