Some of the greatest lessons in the Bible and other scriptural accounts were taught through parables or stories. In our days, these lessons are being taught through movies. One of these movies is the story of Cinderella.
“I have to tell you a secret that will see you through all the trials that life can offer. Have courage and be kind,” were a mother’s last words to her daughter Cinderella before she died. In the movie, kindness and courage really did see her through all the trials in her life. Kindness and courage brought magic in the fairytale. Luckily, this magic does not only happen in movies but also in real life if one understands how powerful these virtues are.
Kindness: A magic we can bring into our lives
In the movie, Cinderella was kind to everyone, even her unkind stepmother and stepsisters. Her kindness was genuine, as she did not expect others to reciprocate her kindness. She was kind because that’s who she was. She did not deviate from what she knew was right despite all the trials that she encountered. In turn, she was blessed with a fairy godmother who helped her meet her prince. Some might say that the fairy godmother brought magic into her life but if examined closely, her kindness did.
We too, can bring magic into our lives and the lives of people around us if we see that there is power in kindness. There are several ways that we can make this happen:
- Treat others with kindness. Every one of us, in one way or another, is finding a way back home to our Heavenly Father. We all have different experiences and circumstances, have taken different paths, developed different talents, and acquired different skills. We react, perceive, and handle things differently. This is the reality and we cannot control it. What we can control is our attitude towards these differences. A little act of kindness can gladden the heart of an already wearied soul. Elder Wirthlin said, “Each one of us will travel a different road during this life. Each progresses at a different rate. Temptations that trouble your brother may not challenge you at all. Strengths that you possess may seem impossible to another. Never look down on those who are less perfect than you. Don’t be upset because someone can’t sew as well as you, can’t throw as well as you, can’t row or hoe as well as you. We are all children of our Heavenly Father. And we are here with the same purpose: to learn to love Him with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength, and to love our neighbor as ourselves.
- Speak kindly. The words we say can become a balm of Gilead that can heal a wounded soul or a two-edge sword that can inflict pain to others. May we always choose the former and strive not to offend or speak ill of others or ourselves. May our words be filled with consideration and compassion that we may be able to speak with a new tongue, even the tongue of angels.
A Call for Courage
If there had been a Cinderella in Old Testament times, it would have been Queen Esther of Persia. She risked her life and saved a nation by entering the King’s court without being summoned, an act punishable by law. She pled for her life and the life of her people. She could have held her peace that she was a Jew and remained in the comfort of her court but she chose to do what she knew was right, even if saving her people would cost her life.
The call for courage for us in these latter days may not be as dramatic as in the time of Queen Esther or other heroes and heroines in the Bible, but we are called to have courage every day of our lives—every time a choice is placed before us. Scottish poet and novelist Robert Louis Stevenson said, “Everyday courage has few witnesses. But yours is no less noble because no drum beats for you and no crowds shout your name.”
President Thomas S. Monson said, “Courage, not compromise, brings the smile of God’s approval.” As we choose to be courageous in choosing what’s right, we will find strength in the Savior and our Heavenly Father. As we do so, the words of Cinderella’s mother will be truer than true, that kindness and courage can see us through all the trials in our lives.