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Life of an Ordinary Aussie Woman

Friday, 26 April 2013

Someday my prince will come...

I was born in 1977, a true ‘Aussie’…by that expression I mean that I have no real claim to any other country or heritage.  I was born in Geelong, Victoria and have a very mixed white heritage.  Another term which I could use would be ‘mongrel’…please don’t be offended by this (especially if you’re not Australian, as you may be confused as to why someone would compare themselves to a dog)…I’m not really doing this ~ it’s Aussie Australia where I’m from it’s ok for an Aussie to call themselves a ‘mongrel’…but someone else better not say it…if you get my drift J

I was my mother’s ‘baby’ for seven years until my little brother was born.
Mum enjoyed our close mother/daughter relationship as did I.
I was truly nurtured by my mother as a young girl…I did have a good early childhood…but I will admit that I did live in a bit of a fantasy world…

Imagination is fine…day-dreaming is fine too…but I think when the fantasy becomes the pursuit then there’s a problem…

Western society in general I think has gone overboard with encouraging the fantastical!

Before I go further, I need to clarify that this post is about my ideas…if you get offended…well ok…but seriously, I’d love for you to share any of your thoughts in the comments section at the bottom…we learn from sharing J
I can remember the first time I was taken to the ‘movies’.  My grandfather shouted me when he came to visit and I’m sure it was to a Walt Disney movie. I have nothing against Walt Disney or movies as such…but I did grow up watching a lot of fantasy based movies.  I was bought endless Barbie dolls and I was lovingly told by people how one day I was going to be a wonderful wife or even maybe somebody famous!  In many ways I was a pampered princess.

Well what’s wrong with that, you may ask?
I’m not saying that a bit of this is not ok…what I think the problem is, is that the pendulum has swung too far in this direction…should this idea surprise us?  I think not.  We all know what people are like when they get onto a good thing…they over indulge!!

There is nothing wrong with children being encouraged to use their imagination…but where is the balance between this, and reality?  It seems like Walt Disney and the like, have replaced moral teaching in the majority of homes…I mean let’s be honest, how much easier is it to put on a moral based movie to quieten down the kids, instead of getting alongside them and being proactive in their influences?
How many young adults do you know today who expect the world to hand them everything on a platter?  How many people leave marriages today, because their marriage doesn’t fulfil their expectations?

How many young women have replaced ‘Walt Disney’ and ‘Barbie dolls’ with influences like ‘Sex in the City’?
How does the young man cope with work place politics when all he really desires deep down is to be the courageous fire-fighter?  How does he feel, when he compares himself to his internal ideal of prince charming…who by the way definitely is no longer married to the mild Sleeping Beauty? 

What does he do when the monotonous job, tired wife and three demanding children are the reality he did not expect?
What foundation does the woman have, who has placed all her trust in a man or girlfriends to fulfil her needs?  What does she do when she becomes a single mother? What does she do when her best-friend-for-life becomes terminally ill? 

Reality is hard…
Children raised without the true knowledge of Jesus Christ are not equipped.

Human knowledge fails.
Jesus Christ is the only true firm foundation for life in our world.

When everything else around you crumbles…and it does…He is the anchor!

I’ve learnt to replace the lie of ‘Someday my prince will come’ with the truth ‘Jesus Christ the Saviour of the World has come and He is the only way to the Father and life.’


Anonymous said...

I like some of your points, but I think fantasy and imagination are good things--important things. Of course, they can be overdone and one must face realities of life.

I expected you to propose some sort of reality-of-life response. Instead, you promoted Jesus over fantasy. However, many approach Jesus in a fantasy-based way.

My question: What do you mean when you contrast fantasy with Jesus?

Rebecca Matthews said...

Really enjoyed this post! So true-Hollywood and celebrities in general have become our children's role models, yet the person who brings peace to the whole world is discarded! Keep 'em coming!

Chris Wilson said...

An interesting article Mel I see your point but I think it might just be a problem with bad fiction/fantasy.
I remember a creative writing teacher telling me that the best sci-fi isn't about the technology, it's the story of the people in a fantastical extreme situation. And I think it's true of fantasy as well.

If you think about Star Wars (original trilogy) there are the themes of divided loyalty, power vs honour, sacrifice, friendship etc. In fact, the way that Han Solo changes from a selfish and self-centred character into a hero due to the example of Luke is why Han is so much cooler than luke. Luke is too Good where as Han is the cool one.

Sometimes Disney can be very guilty of "happy ever after" but if you contrast that with the story in UP which deals with so much pain and heartache of our world and yet find that hint of hope.

Sometimes these stories hint at biblical truths and the wider picture. We need to help children to tell the difference apart from the partial truth they tell.

Tough challenge but I'm sure you are doing a good job raising your kids. Sorry if I've seemed a bit aggressive or challenging when writing this I don't mean to be and I actually agree with you a lot!

Melanie Baker said...

Hi Tim (Jesuswithoutbaggage) thanks for taking time to comment :) I'm glad the post did not do what you thought it would and I appreciate discussion :)
Jesus is more than fantasy :)
He is The Way, THE TRUTH & The Life. Yes people can think/approach Jesus in a fantastical way, it may be a great entry point for faith, but I think this is very limiting and not the reality He offers. I'd like to challenge that ~ He IS more real than what we imagine. And we are able to experience Jesus daily in very real ways.
The world always promotes a lie above the truth and we see it all the time...
How many parents are willing to spend time talking with their kids about the easter bunny, rather than Jesus?
Yes a great talk could begin with the easter bunny...but it's vital that the truth is offered in contrast...
Is that a clear response to your question?

Melanie Baker said...

Hey Rebecca, glad you enjoyed it and thanks SO much for the encouragement. It's a challenge sometimes to write challenging pieces as you know some people could get offended ~ but I am passionate about The Truth...and we know who He is :)

Melanie Baker said...

Hey Chris, your words are not aggressive :) Some people are gifted to write fantastical tales and analogies, that's ok. My issue is when children are just 'drip fed' on this type of genre and it affects their worldview and expectations of reality. Some kids today hardly go outside or know what working hard means, but are in front of a screen mostly...and as a parent I know it's hard to pull them away. I don't always get my parenting right. I think you know I'm proposing a balance.
I don't just want biblical truths for my kids ~ I want them to experience the reality of life with Jesus Christ.
With God's help and grace I hope to not just evangelise my kids, but raise disciples :)

Anonymous said...

Thanks Melanie, you clarified what I was questioning, and I agree that Jesus is not a fantasy and that we should talk to our children about Jesus in very real ways.

~Tim (your found me out!)

Justin Hayes said...

Hey Mel, hope you don't mind me popping by. I appreciate the topic you have discussed. I believe our kids imagination is our key to the future. Their uninhibited fantasies and open minds are really something most adults could learn a great deal from. The inhibitions we manifest from negative experiences as we become adults, limits our very being. Jesus spoke often about the importance of children, and us becoming more like them being meek and mild with less corruption, and I believe we need to un grow up to be truly free. The cartoons produced by Disney when I was a youngster, really have negative connotations when watched now. Woman portrayed in sexist roles of helpless beauty, are far from good roll models for our kids. Our lives are so busy nowadays, and we find it hard to spend enough time with our kids. I say go back to the old days when grandparents were a major part of education in families, and taught morals and ethics.

Melanie Baker said...

Thanks Jus, I appreciate your well thought reply! A child like faith just responds, which is awesome in comparison to the sometimes hardened adult heart :) Yes let's dream BIG, but dreams which are founded in real love, and not in selfishness. I believe that our society could benefit SO much from a more "village raising the child" approach to family :)