Once upon a time, I was a child who loved fairy tales. I loved seeing goodness and truth triumph over evil villains. Happily ever after, that was the expected end. And so it was. And so it always was.
Snow White was a favorite. Oh, such a story! The wicked queen enticed Snow White with an apple. In her guise of a pitiable old lady, the wicked one held forth the fruit, and she lied. What harm, after all, was a lie? It was nothing in the mouth of one who had a jealous, murderous heart.
Enter the prince. One kiss from him and lo, she awoke. She was kissed awake by love.
Many years after being a child reading fairy stories, I'm of the opinion that these are more than simply tales. More, even, than 'this-world-centered morality tales.' After all, where do we find Ever After in this world? We can find commitment, and self-sacrifice, and heroism, and lasting marriage. But even sacramental marriage vows end with 'till death do us part.' No matter how much a man loves his wife, once she has passed from this life, he cannot kiss her alive.
Enter the Savior. Not because someone dreamed Him up in order to make of this life a fairy tale; I'm convinced the truth is just the opposite. Writers of fairy tales and legends knew/know in their hearts that this was how the real story is meant to be.
'The Lord God ... instructed him, saying: 'From every tree of Paradise, you shall eat. But from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat. For in whatever day you will eat from it, you will die.' (Genesis)
'The serpent said to the woman: By no means will you die. For God knows that, on whatever day you will eat from it, your eyes will be opened; and you will be like gods.... ' (Genesis)
'For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but shall have eternal life.' (John 3:16)
'Let Him kiss me with the kisses of His mouth...' (Song of Songs 1:2)
'Eye has not seen, ear has not heard, nor has it so much as dawned on man what God has prepared for those who love Him.' (1 Corinthians 2:9)
'I saw new heavens and a new earth... I also saw a new Jerusalem, the holy city, coming down out of heaven from God, beautiful as a bride prepared to meet her husband.... He shall dwell with them and they shall be His people and He shall be their God who is always with them. He shall wipe every tear from their eyes, and there shall be no more death or mourning, crying out or pain...' (Revelation 21)
And so it is. And so it always is.
And we shall live happily ever after.
(This is an edited repost from It's Only Write, 2014)
Painting: Duncan, 1915, Sleeping Princess
Oh Nancy, I love this! It is so true, isn't it? As a child, I loved fairytales. I so wished they could really come true! That was before I knew the most wonderful secret ever....there really is a happily ever after. Thank you for expressing this so beautifully. You made me smile, and I felt the joy and wonder of that little girl's heart again. xoxoReplyDelete
Yes, there IS a happily ever after - thanks be to God! Thank you, Patricia.Delete
Me too Nancy. I love fairy tales and believe in happily ever after. Don't understand pessimism and I realize this is a great grace given to usReplyDelete
Yes, it is a grace, Anabelle, and I pray that many will find it. Thanks!Delete
What a great analogy, Nancy! This is a good one for young daughters to read, too.ReplyDelete
Patty, I think so too - about the young daughters!Delete
Amen!! Reminds me of Julian of Norwich: "And all will be well, and all will be well, and all manner of things will be well in the end." We have refuge in our faith even if it is turbulent....ReplyDelete
Yes! Even if it is turbulent!Delete
Just lovely, Nancy. So many fairy tales have just these truths. Like my favorite, Sleeping Beauty. We all lay under the spell of the evil one, asleep, until our Prince wakes us up.ReplyDelete
I think you're right; we all have an instinctual understanding of how things are really meant to be.
Yes, until our Prince wakes us up! Thanks, Deborah.Delete