No matter how old I get, I will always love the story of Cinderella. I recently went to see Disney’s newest version of the beloved classic and was reminded again why I love it so much. I love it because Cinderella is my story…and it is yours. It is our story. The story of a beautiful maiden who had a wonderful, loving family as a child. She wanted for nothing. She was cherished and adored, and life was good. And then tragedy struck. The loss of her mother eventually led to the remarriage of her father to another woman. In time she also loses her beloved father, and becomes a slave in her own house. Jealously despised by her step-mother and two step-sisters, she is forced to wait on them hand and foot. She endures much cruelty from their words and actions.
As she grows into young womanhood, the opportunity comes for every maiden to attend a ball so that the prince might choose a bride. She actually meets him by chance one day, though his identity is kept a secret. It was love at first sight for them both. Despite the objections and attempts of her step-mother and sisters to keep her from attending the ball, she does show up, through the grace of her fairy god-mother. She meets the prince again and he is captivated by her beauty. Before the magic ends and she is discovered to be a peasant girl, she disappears suddenly, leaving one glass slipper behind. After searching throughout the kingdom for the maiden who lost the shoe, the prince discovers her to be a servant, not the princess he had thought her to be. Nevertheless, his love remains the same for her and they get married and live happily ever after.
We were once that beautiful maiden, (sorry guys, you’ll have to stretch that imagination!) deeply loved and cherished by our Heavenly Father. Then tragedy struck in the Garden and we became slaves in the place we once knew as paradise. Much suffering entered the world and we continually faced many troubles and trials. Yet there is a Prince, a King, who in spite of our poverty, shame, and brokenness, is captivated by our beauty. He has already planned in His heart His royal wedding, and intends to marry us and make us His beloved bride. Even now, He is searching throughout His kingdom for those who have lost their way. He intends to find all who will say “Yes” to Him and we will live with Him in His kingdom forever and ever.
The truth that makes our story even more powerful than Cinderella, is that we chose to walk away from Him. We chose to reject the One who loves us the greatest. We chose the sin that has marred us and the earth we live in. Yet His love remains unrelenting, and He will not be denied. His desire is for us and He has done all that was necessary to make a way back to Him, including laying down His life. His grace makes it possible for us to become the princess He intended us to be. Our story is a real life fairy tale.