#2 – I DO Believe in Fairies

“Always live with a sense that you can be more than you ever thought you could be, for you’ve yet to tap your deepest potential.” -Kathleen Morgan


Did you know that every time you say, “I don’t believe in fairies,” a fairy falls down dead?

Well, I don’t know if you believe in fairies or not, but I think this is an interesting thought to ponder. Of all things that could possibly sap a fairy of its strength, why is it disbelief?

I don’t think fairies are the only ones whose existence thrives on belief. I think we humans are similar. So maybe we don’t physically die, but sometimes our dreams do.

When I was in high school, a friend of my father’s used to come up to me, take my face between his hands, kiss me on the forehead (he’s one of the precious few people who can get away with doing that), and tell me, “I believe in you.” At the time, I thought it was a strange thing for him to say. Exactly what was he referring to when he said he believed in me? Silly me was looking for specifics; my friend was saying precisely what he meant.

Me. He believed in me. He believed in the infinite possibilities God had placed within my heart. He believed in anything and everything I was capable of doing. Even the things I had yet to discover.

It’s amazing how much of our potential begins or ends in our minds. If we tell ourselves we can’t, we can’t. If we’re convinced that we will fail, we fail. Sometimes all it takes is that one person looking you in the eye and saying, “I believe in you.”

I have a cousin who is seven years old. She can’t walk, can’t talk, and has no diagnosis and, therefore, no known cure. But I know that Leah thrives on belief. My aunt tells me stories of how Leah shuts down around certain people. Basic functions are difficult for her to perform, so if you don’t believe she’s capable of doing them, she won’t waste her energy trying to impress. But I’ve only heard the stories because I know that Leah is much more capable than she lets on. She comes alive around me because I’m the kind of person who takes her face in my hands, kisses her on the forehead, looks deep into her eyes, and whispers, “I believe in you.”

If I could see your face right now, I’d tell you the same. I don’t care what anyone else has told you. You are capable of so much more than you ever dreamed you could be. So this is me, clapping my hands, rousing you back to the realm of dreams and possibilities. Wake up, my friend. I believe in you.

The Purpose of a Fairytale

You may have heard the quote: “Disney gave me unrealistic expectations of men.” I’m not sure who invented that statement, but I have to question their accuracy. We have a tendency to blame fairytales for our distorted views of what love should look like, but you never see anyone blaming Disney for making us believe that animals can talk. You never hear anyone complaining, “Oh man, and I really thought last night would be the night Peter Pan showed up at my window.” And when’s the last time you tried to kiss a frog?

Let’s face it, we’re not really expecting to take a bite of a poisoned apple and wait for our Prince to come wake us from a comatose state. No one really expects that to happen. So why are we blaming Snow White for our troubles? Sounds to me like she had it a lot worse than I do.

Fairytales weren’t written to give you a distorted view of romance; they were written to instill hope in the hearts of those who want to give up on living. Prince Charming aside, fairytales are all about chasing your dreams and finding the courage to step into the unknown. That’s the true romance and adventure of a fairytale.

Though many of us still love fairytales to this day, we started watching them as small children – back in our “boys are icky” days. I know that I, personally, did not watch Cinderella for the wedding scene at the end, but for the music and the mice and the adventure that led up to that fateful moment at the ball. When she met Prince Charming, I wasn’t sighing because it was romantic, I was shouting, “Take that, you evil stepsisters!” That was Cinderella’s real victory. She lived as a sweet-hearted servant until she finally rose to the princess position that she deserved.

So stop blaming Disney for your broken dreams, and read the rest of the story. There’s so much more to life than finding Prince Charming. Happily ever after is the end of the story… Try living once upon a time.

The Mediocre

I’ve been reading a novel called Giver of Roses. While I’m still not sure what I think of the book, I do know that this one quote jumped out and hit me square in the chest:

“Always live with a sense that you can be more than you ever thought you could be, for you’ve yet to tap your deepest potential.”

I certainly haven’t been living with that sense lately, and I know I haven’t tapped my deepest potential. In fact, I haven’t even tried.  I feel like I’ve slowly let my life slip back into mediocre – a place I never wanted to be. But here I am.

Sometimes I have to force myself back to the fairytales. Back to that place of wonder and magic, fairies and pirates, Princes and dragons and mermaids and dreams. Sometimes my mind must escape to that place far away from reality, because it is my mindset that is keeping me here in the mediocre.

I find it strange that, as a child, all one longs to do is grow up and make your own rules; but once you reach that grown-up world, your heart wishes to escape to the simplicity of childhood. To return to Neverland. If only to escape the mediocre.

I firmly believe that there must be a balance somewhere, though few ever seem to find it. Few live with that sense that we could be more than we ever thought we could be. Few have tapped their deepest potential. I feel as if there is part of my dream that I’ve not even begun to dream. But I want to.

May we always live with the sense that we can be more than we ever dreamed we could be. May we live something far greater than the mediocre.

And how do we get beyond the mediocre, you ask? Well, I can’t be sure, but I’ve heard it’s the second star to the right and straight on ’til morning.

Enchanted Lessons

Enchanted is one of my all-time favorite Disney movies. Being the fairytale fanatic that I am, I absolutely love that there are fairytale classics hidden throughout the movie. But what I love most about the whimsical character of Giselle is that she’s wrong. This “perfect” fairytale character made a mistake. She set her eyes on the wrong Prince and almost didn’t realize it until it was too late.

See, Giselle had been waiting for her Prince for so long that she nearly settled for the first one who arrived on the scene. But she wasn’t made to “finish Edward’s duet”; she was meant to be with Robert. But day after day, she cries, “Edward is coming for me. Edward this… and Edward that…”

I think Giselle represents the typical single woman. We so often set our gaze in the wrong direction. Because we are searching so hard for Prince Charming, we fail to notice that our true Prince has been at our side all along. And while He’s trying to talk some sense into our fantasy-filled heads, we’re too busy singing about “true love’s kiss” to notice.

In my opinion, Enchanted is all about finding a healthy balance between our fairytale dreams and the cynical “welcome to reality” that can be the other extreme. So perhaps true love’s kiss isn’t the most powerful thing in the world, and maybe “happily ever after” is best left in the fairytales. But then again, maybe dreams really do come true, and Prince Charming really does exist – though perhaps not in the form you had expected.

Don’t miss your Prince. Don’t miss your purpose. Release your silly fantasies and realize that true love is closer than you think, because once upon a time, a great and glorious Prince stepped down from His throne with the intention of wooing His bride. For her, He would give His life. Look no farther, young maiden. Your Prince has already come. He has wooed you through the ages, and today He extends His hand and invites you into the dance of eternity. This is the moment you’ve dreamed of all your life. So what are you waiting for?

The Facts Behind the Fairytales

“Okay, Rebekah,” you may be thinking. “Why the obsession with fairytales? Why can’t you just let them go and accept that they are simply bedtime stories that have no relevance in real life?” Well, it’s because I do think they have relevance. Perhaps they are not entirely fantasy. Perhaps there is something more to them. Just as Aesop’s fables were meant to teach us something, perhaps fairytales are more of an allegory than a fantasy.

Am I the only one who finds it interesting that Snow White’s ultimate demise was taking a bite of a poison apple? Doesn’t that remind you of a story found in the third chapter of Genesis? Or how about Beauty and the Beast where the heroine couldn’t see that the Prince of her dreams was standing before her because he didn’t come in the form she had always imagined him to be? Doesn’t that make you think about a people who didn’t recognize their Messiah when He came to rescue them? And why does Prince Charming have to fight through a thicket of thorns in order to save the Princess? Could it be that this fictitious Prince is a reflection of the Prince who wore a crown of thorns on behalf of his beloved? I think there are too many coincidences to be accidental. And even if they were accidental, I think there is still so much we can learn from the fairytales. I think that if you look a little harder and dig a little deeper, you’ll find many hidden messages in places you never would have dreamed they would be.

I believe in finding God in the everyday ordinary – in butterflies and beaches, sand and storms, flowers and fairytales. Close your eyes, open your heart, and allow yourself to see the facts behind the fairytales.

You’re My Home

Beauty and the Beast is one of my favorite fairytales. I always loved the Disney cartoon, then I watched a local high school perform the Broadway version. Why couldn’t all the songs from Broadway have been incorporated into the cartoon? For nearly eighteen years of my life, I didn’t know what I was missing. Me!, No Matter What, Maison des Lunes… and I found myself particularly drawn to the song Home. (Maybe that stems from the fact that I’m a notorious homebody who doesn’t know why her dreams had to carry her 450 miles away from the place where she grew up.)

Here’s a story that takes a horrible situation and gives it a happy ending. This is a girl’s nightmare turned fairytale. It’s a twist in Belle’s perspective that makes this story spectacular. It’s her willingness to change her views that brings the happy ending. She could have spent the rest of her life “shut away from the world until who knows when,” but instead she chose to open herself up to this monster who held her captive. And in the end she discovered he wasn’t truly a monster at all. As the story reaches the climax and the Beast lies dying, Belle confesses the thing she has learned throughout her time of captivity with these words: “Don’t you know how you’ve changed me? Strange how I finally see… I’ve found home – you’re my home. Stay with me.”

I guess the Beast ended up being what Belle sang about in her first rendition of Home – where the heart is. I’ve found that to be the only way of coping with being so far away from my biological home. I simply focus my heart on where I am and who I’m with. Better yet, I’ve invited Jesus to be my Home. That way I never have to leave it.  Now if I stumble upon an enchanted castle in a deep woods, I won’t have to sing a song of mourning. My song will always be one of joy because I’ve been changed, and I’ve found home. God is my home, and He will forever stay with me.