The Lie of the Fairytale

There is a ways that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death. Proverbs 14:12

When you have three daughters you pretty much get to watch every Disney Fairytale ever made… and about 20 times each. We know the music, the stories, the characters and all the details. I remember loving fairy tales growing up too. And even now, what woman doesn’t appreciate a good romantic comedy?

And yet as a Christian, and a mom who wants to lead her daughters in the ways of Christ, I see a few dangers in just absorbing, at face value, the morals of the stories. For example, many of the Fairytales teach us to “follow your heart,” and yet the Bible says in Jeremiah 17:9 that “the heart is deceitful above all else and beyond cure.” And the verse above says that there is a way that seems right to a man (often driven by the heart) but in the end it leads to death!

For example, In “The Little Mermaid”, which happens to be my girls favorite Fairytale, Ariel is discontent with what she has and the boundaries her father has given her (no, he wasn’t perfect like our Heavenly Father but no earthly father is) so she disobeys him and follows her heart….right into the den of evil witch Ursula. In her heart it felt right to do what she wanted but that was not only disobedient, it was unwise and incredibly unsafe. Following her heart led to a situation where she, her friends and her whole family could have been killed. Yes, we are the biggest buzz kill for our girls when watching the movie because we always point these things out (and yes, we get the eye rolls all around). But I am trusting that as we try to shape their thinking about what they read and watch (and who they look up to) that these principles will sink in for living later on when their choices have greater consequences too.

There are a few points here: God calls us not to follow our hearts, but to follow Him and His Word. Proverbs teaches us over and over again that following our own desires is foolishness and leads us away from God towards things that are destructive, whereas following God and His Word is wise living and leads to life and good things. The other lesson here is to enjoy the Fairytales, but think biblically about their ultimate lessons and morals. God wants us to put on our biblical worldview hat in every area of life. Whether we are watching a movie, reading a book, listening to a lecture or whatever, lets ask, “Is what I am hearing in this consistent with God’s word?”

And here is the good news…we can walk in wisdom by the grace of God, because on the cross Jesus took the ultimate death and destruction that our sinful, foolish hearts deserve. So if/when we do blow it and choose the path of foolishness over wisdom, we have a perfect, Heavenly Father who forgives and restores us.

Prayer: Help me today to filter my hearts desires through the grid of your Word and your character. Give me wisdom and the grace to follow it knowing that your boundaries provide life for me. In Jesus name, Amen.