Courageous Kindness

cinderella-movie-2015As a little girl, I never liked Cinderella. She was too quiet, soft and subservient. She wasn’t feisty, passionate and adventurous like Belle or Jasmine or Ariel.

Cinderella-dadI always wanted Cinderella to stand up to her stepmother and stepsisters. I never understood why she was such a doormat, blindly tied to a promise to her dead parents who, at the time they asked it of her, had no knowledge of how her situation would develop and change after they were gone. Cinderella seemed foolhardy to me, incapable of adapting to the dynamic nature of her situation.

cinderella-headshotBut I recently watched the new Cinderella movie, and it landed differently with me than the animated film I grew up with. In this new, live actor film, Cinderella inspired me. Her story stirred me and actually moved me to tears. “Have courage, and be kind,” she repeated to herself over and over again, through the death of a mother, death of a father, servitude to her stepsisters and incomprehensible cruelty by her stepmother.

Cinderella-ragsAs an adult watching the movie of Cinderella, I am struck by her response to suffering – intense, terrible suffering. Cinderella didn’t pretend everything was okay, mindlessly skipping through a field of wildflowers and humming with bluebirds while her so-called family abused her. No, we saw Cinderella hurt, frustrated and broken. We watched Cinderella struggle and almost fail to keep her courage and kindness as the pains of life continued to roll in.

cinderella_horseBut Cinderella resolved to keep her heart soft; chose not to betray her true self to the all-too-easy bitterness and anger over circumstances beyond her control. Cinderella also chose kindness – and not just kindness, but courage as well. She chose to be strong and gentle; noble and compassionate; brave and tenderhearted.

The complements of courage and kindness united in the person of Cinderella are a strikingly beautiful portrait that remind me of another story: one of a God who is both all-powerful and loves without reservation. Power belongs to God, and Loving-kindness is Yours, O Lord.” -Psalm 62:11-12

There is power in courageous kindness. Some might even call it magic.

Cinderella-dress-transformation

Authentically Aurora

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3 thoughts on “Courageous Kindness

  1. I watched this version of Cinderella too and what came to mind was ‘breath of fresh air’. Initially I’d thought it would have one of those cliche stortylines; or worsestill, have a weird twist like ‘Into the woods’. But shock on me; it was everything I hadn’t anticipated; beautiful and very inspiring. At some point watching her grief almost brought me to tears. It was very moving. Thank you for this beautiful post. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • I felt the same way and had the same expectations! Disney can be a bit cheesy and/or predictable (and agreed that “Into the Woods” was a bit odd), but this version of Cinderella may be one of my new favorite movies. I may re-watch it when I need to feel inspired. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Maybe it’s because I was on the boat at the time or I was tired or I am just a little too bitter, but I didn’t like this one. I thought she seemed a little to doormatty to me in the movie and it was a little too bland. I actually prefer the one with Drew Barrymore, Ever After if you’ve seen that one. Much more fighting for her rights kind, but I thought so much better. Just my opinion though. 🙂

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