Often when we think of Cinderella, we think of this picture perfect story with a fancy dress, glass slippers, and a handsome prince. Of course we could have a pretty princess smile on our face all the time if we had THAT life. But it’s easy to forget what Cinderella’s day-to-day life was like:
What about the Cinderella in the rags? In the movie, those big-footed stepsisters were rotten to her, and still she sang and was nice to mice and had pretty hair and was still skinny even in the midst of all that pressure. And she had to scrub floors and miss royal balls and churn butter out of mud. What a sweet girl she was, but I can’t help wondering, What if I was Cinderella in the rags? I would be hopping mad by the time that ball rolled around. I may have been able to hide it for a while, but the mistreatment and the unfairness of it all.
(Freeman, Emily P. (2011-09-01). Grace for the Good Girl: Letting Go of the Try-Hard Life (Kindle Locations 1512-1517). Baker Book Group. Kindle Edition.)
This description of Cinderella makes me think again to the current sermon series on JOY. It seems as if there had to be something behind the smile as she danced around in her rag dresses just waiting to hear the complaints from her stepsisters or stepmom about something that wasn’t done to absolute perfection.
While we all hear again and again that joy is not based on circumstances and happenings like happiness, “Be joyful always” is a command from Scripture that is often difficult to live out.
What about those days when our hair won’t cooperate or family members are trying our patience? What about when a loved one gets ill or dies? What about the pink slip or the detention slip? Do these things cause us to get grouchy or turn into the wicked stepsisters? Or do we sing and praise in the midst of our trials? Do we hold grudges or let forgiveness reign? Do we let ourselves feel broken and put out when “bad things happen to good people” and “good things happen to the bad?” Or do we remember with joy that One day, our Prince will come to completely renew and restore?