As I arrived at the theater to see Cinderella, I thought it would be a great movie because of the trailers, reviews, and epic movies Disney always makes. Of course, the film didn’t let me down and I enjoyed it very much. There’s so much right with the movie. Throughout there were some feelings and scenes that had me thinking. I saw God’s grace and mercy in so many instances during Cinderella, more so in some parts than in others. Let’s go over the first one. Be aware though, there are spoilers for the movie and even the ending.
When you look at Cinderella, all you see are rags and poverty. Seeking an escape from her step-mother’s horrible treatment, Cinderella flees into the woods and meets the Prince who pretends he’s not a prince at all. Later, she realizes he is the crown prince, but he explains that he didn’t want her to act differently if she knew he was royalty.
Christ sees us as His bride, the church. Jesus Christ is the bridegroom and we are His church that He is to receive without blemish (Ephesians 5:27). The Prince took Cinderella just like she was, poverty and all. He wasn’t interested in how she could benefit him financially, but he loved her just as she was. God loves us in the same way, and we are received into His family just as we are. He loves us even while we were/are sinners, and nothing will stop Him from chasing after us so we can receive His Son’s forgiveness of our sins (2 Peter 3:9).
Have Courage and Be Kind
This is the motto of the entire movie. Cinderella’s mother gave this phrase to Cinderella before she died, and Cinderella repeats it to herself many times to get through her trials. It’s encouraging to see the power of words, and how saying them to ourselves brings them to life and becomes a part of us. As Christians, we can use this theme to remember to speak God’s promises over our own life and see their power manifest.
I knew there was a Bible verse that mentioned courage, so I looked it up and found these two that matched the film perfectly.
9 This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
6 So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.”
Now, I do have to challenge something in the movie did that I don’t agree with. God calls us to be courageous and strong, but Cinderella was completely afraid and discouraged because of her step-mother and step-sisters. You don’t see her challenge them except for one scene, but for a long time she just puts up with it without a word.
As Christians we are called to be kind, but that doesn’t mean to be stepped on or ridiculed. Yes, we will go through trials because of our faith in Christ, but there are times that you need to stand up and defend yourself. He has given us the strength to walk out our purpose no matter who or what is in our way.
I Forgive You
The last words Cinderella gave to her step-mother are, “I forgive you.” Now, they may only be three words, but after watching the movie you know that they are so powerful Duchess Tremaine dropped to her knees. In a short phrase, Cinderella emptied her heart of any bitterness she had towards her step-mother.
We are offered forgiveness through Christ. Everyone has sinned, and we are all looking for a way to overcome our wickedness, lies, and other transgressions we know we have all committed. Sin isn’t a secret, and we all know what is wrong and what is right. Nobody needs to tell us, but what many of us don’t know is that we can be forgiven. You either receive that forgiveness through Jesus Christ who paid for all your sin on the cross, or like Cinderella’s step-mother, you decide to reject it and walk away which is what she did.
Cinderella, on top of being an amazing movie and a step forward for Disney as a company, has a strong Christian message believers can learn from. I hope that you not only enjoy this movie, but see God’s mercy, strength, and forgiveness behind the story.