|Disney's Beauty and The Beast (1991)|
The concluding question of my last post has stayed with me the last few days. It's become less about TIME Magazine's article, and more about what it all means to me personally. I suppose I just want to believe. Despite my own brokenness as a sinful human being. Despite what I've experienced, read, seen and heard. Despite the circus acts that play out around me in the name of 'love'. Deep down, I still want to believe. I think we all do - even if we're battered, bruised and crawling on the ground. But it's so hard.
And an awesome, timeless tale came back to me:
Disney's 'Beauty and the Beast' fascinated me when I first watched it. Not initially because of the romance or the great love story, though I've come to love that too. My attention was riveted by the Beast, because I saw myself in him. Time and again as I have watched this movie, I have followed his face, his eyes and his expression - even in the scene above. I couldn't take my eyes off him. I still can't.
The Beast reminds me of myself, in times past and present. Rather than the spell of an enchantress, I see my wounds of childhood years that turned the heart that could have been into the heart that is. I remember my heart that resorted to building layers of "emotional armor", finally shutting everyone out in some form or the other for the past 11 years or more. I am saddened as I remember the many ways in which it hurt and pushed away those who cared about me . I reflect on how it was driven like a wounded animal into wilderness, following a broken road that finally led it into the loving arms of Jesus. But scars and memories still remain, and I often see the Beast looking back at me in the mirror, wishing the transformation would happen faster or sooner.
But as much as I am spellbound by the Beast, I cannot shut out Belle either. I must admit her pivotal role in the story that brings upon the Beast the crushing realization of all that resides in him. Without her, he cannot look at himself and recognize what he has become. I believe that this provides an essential clue that differentiates true love, romance and marriage from the bad comedy in North America that TIME Magazine has reported on.
I am convinced that a truly, truly beautiful woman shaped by God has this effect on a man whom God is molding, when He brings her in front of him. I believe that her "Belle" is contrasted by God to show him the "Beast" that still exists within, desperately wanting transformation. I also believe that God uses the Beast to transform her "Belle". And that only propels both closer to God in search of that change within. When that happens in the context of a relationship where there is genuine love and romance, no one will ask the question: "Who Needs Marriage?"
We all want to believe in this. Somehow, we must. Can we?
I wish my Beast would transform.
- The Wisdom Seeker.