by Ellen cross posted from her blog When Church Hurts
Has anyone else seen the parallels between Elsa and their own experience with spiritual abuse?
I first saw the movie just days after being tossed out of our church and I sat there in tears and in awe as I watched Elsa make the “mistake” of hurting her sister while she was using her incredible gift to create joy and delight.
She then is shut up, not allowed to use her gift any longer and she is told she cannot tell anyone what is happening to her.
When she finally unleashes what must be years of pent up anguish, the townsfolk and dignitaries are horrified, frightened, and even though she flees the kingdom, they want more than that. They want her killed. Destroyed. Elsa’s absence means the kingdom will remain frozen and struggling to survive.
Elsa’s sister, Anna, has a love interest in the story who appears to be a wonderful, loving, devoted prince, but when Anna is about to die, he reveals his true self by telling the dying Anna that his whole plan was to take over the kingdom.
It’s been almost a year, but as I watched the movie again last night, I was still struck. I had been using my gifts to bless and delight. Somewhere along the way, my efforts for good were seen as threatening and so I was told I could not use them any longer. I was “shut up” – not allowed to tell anyone what they were forcing upon me. And when I finally “let it go” by telling my story, I was banished from the kingdom. And not only banished, but there are many indications that efforts have been made to destroy me – my character – and to treat me as dead by the way that I have been shunned.
The “prince”/pastor whom I thought cared and would care enough to help me, to rescue me, to set everything right, instead has abandoned me – probably thinking that I would “die” and he would be free to rule and reign over the kingdom.
But in the end, love wins. No, I didn’t win the kingdom, as Elsa did. But I won my freedom. I won back my joy. I won my ability to use my gifts again without reservation or worry that by doing so I would risk being judged again.
Yesterday, my son gave me the movie Frozen for Christmas. I watched it for the first time since a year ago last night. Only this time there were no tears. Only enjoyment knowing that in the end, Elsa wins.
More about Ellen: