The Strength to Rise

(Photo by Selma Komisky)

The Strength to Rise

By Alexandria Bowers

“Frozen 2” is a mixed bag of a movie for me.

The Frozen franchise as a whole has always given me warring thoughts and ideas. I would debate on whether or not I like it. With that being the case, it should be no surprise that the second film in the lineup both irritated and broke me.

Even though there are underlying issues in the script, one can’t help but be fascinated by the sister duo of Queen Elsa and Princess Anna. For me, the aspect that continually draws me back to the Frozen movies is the discussion of mental health. As someone who experienced anxiety since my early teen years, I was drawn to Elsa like many others upon her arrival to the cinema. The second time around, I was not just relieved to reconnect with the Snow Queen, but also astonished to connect with Anna on such a deep and heartbreaking level.

Even though Elsa gets masterpieces like “Into the Unknown” and “Show Yourself,” sung by the fantastic Idina Menzel, Kristen Bell’s Anna gets a softer and more discrete ballad. Rather than taking the world by storm, she is a tempest within herself.

The lyrics of “The Next Right Thing” baffled me upon my first listen and continue to after a hundred replays. Heart-aching rather than heart-pounding, Anna’s song has become a quiet and enduring anthem for those who hide their anxiety, depression, fear and sorrow behind their forced smiles and fake laughter. Those who have pretended to be happy far too long are now hanging on their last thread of hope. Those who have secluded their broken hearts for the sake of helping other people have heartbroken spirits.

As summer bleeds into autumn; the bright days become thinner as thick nights take over. If you let me, I want to be a calm voice in your life right now for a few moments. I wish to remind you of some truth in love today. If you find yourself resonating with Princess Anna or Queen Elsa or if you’re depressed, anxious, lonely, and lost, I write this all for you.

Micah 7:8 says, “Rejoice not over me, O my enemy; when I fall, I shall rise; when I sit in darkness the Lord will be a light to me” (ESV). Do you know what these words mean? Whether yes or no, let me tell you how I perceive them in light of Frozen 2. If you’re experiencing some sort of darkness right now, let me tell you why I plead with you to take hold of these words.

We all fall. It’s a human thing. We’re not perfect. We all get beaten, bruised, and broken down by the trials we face in this life. No one is exempt from failing God, themselves, or by others. Many people believe that they are beyond great falling or that they are invincible. They also believe that they will never drop from exhaustion or pain.

In the context of having anxiety, depression, or excessive fear and worry, those of us who suffer consistently with these things often forget that it’s normal to fall. However, it is possible to RISE. Again and again and again.

If you’re someone who struggles with claiming daily victory over your battle with the enemy, I want you to read the words of Micah 7:8 again. Accept this declaration as your own: “Rejoice not over me, O my enemy; when I fall, I shall rise; when I sit in darkness the Lord will be a light to me” (ESV).

When you fall, dear reader, no matter how many times, by the mercy and grace of Jesus you have the capability to rise once more. When you sit in darkness, remember the Lord is the brightest star in the blackest of skies. As Satan and the enemies of this world try to trample you, rejoice in the Lord as your strength and song.

As you walk through the valley of the shadow of death, fear no evil, for God is with you.

The light at the end of the tunnel, dear reader, is WITHIN you. He is for you, before you, behind you, all around you, surrounding you with truth and love as the enemy attempts to hit your mind and heart with lies.

Just put one foot in front of the other. Breathe one breath at a time.

You’re going to be okay. It’s not my promise, it’s God’s.

Rise, dear one.