I just watched “Tangled” for about the seventh time, and just the other day I watched “Enchanted” for the eighth time.  Am I obsessed?  No.  I simply enjoy the beautiful stories of love and adventure and ever after.  I feel like a princess when I watch them.  And the music is delightful!  (check out the song at the bottom)

but…

I never felt like a princess as a child.

I wasn’t the girl who gravitated towards all things pink.  I liked blue, and still do.  I didn’t beg my mom to buy me barbies and dolls and pretty, frilly dresses with bows.  And I absolutely did not look at Cinderella, Snow White, or any other Disney princess as my role model.  It wasn’t that I was a tomboy, only wanting to play with the guys and pretend I was one of them.  I just felt silly being girly. It embarrassed me to think about getting dressed up and twirling around in circles for all to see.  I was happy wearing pants and a shirt and standing still…well, just not twirling.  But really, that embarrassment of being pretty and girly was drawn out from a fear of not measuring up to all the other girls around me, whom I felt were the true princesses.

Now, however, I embrace the land of pink and princesses and happily ever afters.  I find myself gravitating towards the pretty and girly and even sometimes frilly.  I enjoy twirling around in my skirts, and imagining I’m a ballerina…even if my ballerina days only lasted two years and consisted of me dressing up as a very tall spider while others got to be Little Miss Muffet. While I still don’t fancy wearing makeup and buying expensive jewels to adorn myself with, I feel I am a princess.  In fact, I believe all girls are, regardless of our age, status, or our fascination with pink.   The princess state of mind goes beyond these things, dresses and jewels and frills.  It has something to do with our desire to love and be loved, to live life with a passion and sense of adventure, to be willing to lose our shoe and be okay with it, and to walk in confidence as a daughter of the King while still maintaining a beautiful sense of vulnerability that beckons others into the Kingdom.

I am so thankful for the people in my life that have helped encourage me to be confident in who I am.

In Junior High my pastor,  Andrew Jones, urged me to play piano on the worship team even though I had very little training and didn’t measure up to the amazingly trained musicians already involved. I was so scared to step out and play in front of others, but once I finally did, God helped me to grow as a musician and giving me opportunities to play that I could never do on my own.

In school, my favourite teacher was Mrs. Ballentine, who taught me in kindergarten and grade six. She was a huge encouragement to me, giving me opportunities to lead and teaching me how to lead with grace and humility through her example.  She challenged our class in grade six to be leaders in the school and wherever we went, and even though we were so young, she valued our thoughts and gave us no reason to doubt our ability to make a difference in the world.

“Stand tall” my mom said to me one day I will never forget.  In grade five, I was walking from the school to our green minivan at the end of the day, and I had my head down.  I had fallen into a habit of looking down, perhaps in an attempt to feel shorter and blend in with those around me.  When my mom told me “stand tall” she spoke to me in love, showing me that it was ok to be my height.  As simple as that moment was, knowing that my mom loved me and wanted me to embrace my height meant so much to me.

Each of these people, including many others, have impacted me in big and small ways and helped to give me confidence.  Even now, I am reading a devotional book with verses and life lessons written by Joyce Meyer, entitled “The Confident Woman.”  It is a continual lesson I am learning and my desire is to grow each day in confidence, not of my own strength and abilities, but in my loving Father.  The King. My God.  Knowing who I am in Him, a treasured child in His Kingdom, gives me confidence to step out into the unknown and take on the world with a pep in my step, haha.

In these past few years, my life has taken some major twists and turns.  With each new curve in the road, God was there already preparing the way.  A new challenge to overcome, a new friend to meet, a new opportunity to seize!  I’d like to say that with each challenge and friend and opportunity I came out on top, with perfect joy and gladness…but the truth is that I’ve fallen many times and bumped myself along this journey.

Sometimes we fail at a challenge.  Sometimes our friends break our hearts. And sometimes opportunities are missed.  In life, there are battles to be won and lost…but it’s not only princes who get to fight.

Cinderella had to fight against the daily injustice of being treated as servant by her her evil stepmother and stepsisters.

Snow White had to fight to be free from the jealous Queen’s evil plan to have her killed.

Rapunzel had to fight to see her dreams come true, escaping her tower and finding her place in life.

Belle has to fight against her own idea of happily ever after in exchange for something much more wonderful.

Each of us has our battle to fight.  We have a journey to embark on, and a purpose for our life!  Often people ridicule these princess stories, saying that they place too much emphasis on getting married as the ticket to a better life. But there is so much more to these fairytales as I am starting to see.  There is beauty in the wait.  There is joy in the challenges life presents us with.  There is hope in times of darkness and pain.  Rather than looking at our hard times and times of waiting in life as places we wish to escape from, we can look at them as opportunities to grow, and become prepared for what’s ahead.

Cinderella had her attic.  Snow White had her cabin in the woods. Rapunzel had her tower.  And Belle had her time in the Beast’s castle.  They each had a place to grow.  A place to prepare themselves for upcoming adventures as Princesses.  They did not know their fate.  They did not sit around waiting to be waited upon.  They cleaned and cared for seven strange men, read books, and learned to love beyond the surface.  Then, in due time, things changed in what seemed like a blink of an eye.  But because of their years of preparation for their unknown destiny, they remained humble and loving and kind.

Perhaps I am going too far into this whole princess analogy…but I like what I have learned from these movies.  Moreover, I am so happy that God has shown me how to embrace life with open arms and never be afraid to ask Him something, because I am a His daughter…a real princess.

“The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace.”

Numbers 6:24 – 26 


p.s. I will be sharing stories from my time here in Romania shortly…I just had this on my heart to write for now : )

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