The Slave in Cinderella

Where can I go from your Spirit?
    Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
    if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
-Psalm 139:7-8-

The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free..
-Luke 4:8-

There is nothing more enticing than a good love story, or a good fairy tale. Princes and happily ever afters are my kryptonite, along with white cheddar popcorn. So Sunday afternoon, my husband and I cozied up to our TV to watch the newest version of Cinderella. It did not disappoint, keeping the story's integrity, and yet, if it's possible, making it more magical.

I cried with her and felt her lonliness as she came to the dinner table to eat and was refused, I sat in suspense as her stepmother locked her in the attic, and watched in wonder as a fairy godmother fulfilled her dream.

When she met the Prince, I beamed with joy, but as she ran down those sloping castle stairs after midnight, I found myself angry.

Why didn't she just stay? Why couldn't she turn around and show him who she was? He'd have loved her despite her status--she was just prolonging her suffering! And then it hit me.

Cinderella isn't just about a love story. (I know, I'm slow sometimes.)

It's about the journey from her mindset as slave, to one of royalty. We talk about her as a princess, but it's clear she doesn't start out believing that she is one. At the ball she could have revealed who she was, she could have let him in and risked his love, but years of mistreatment and poverty told her she was still nobody, so she ran, content to shine just a moment (which was all a poor girl could hope for.)

And yet, prophetically, the Prince pursues and calls her out of hiding---just as God pursues us, through the Garden, into Egypt, around a mountain (for forty years), through a dessert, and throughout history.
And what about us? What have we accepted because of our experiences? What gifts have we sabotaged because we felt we didn't deserve them? What callings have we run from because they seemed too daunting? Who have we run from, afraid to risk love?

This Prince, He's relentless. He is coming, arms open wide, with a crown, and He will not stop.

Don't you hear him?

Do you dare run?


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