I know what you might be thinking. “Tinkerbell, Melissa? Seriously?” But stay with me here. The pre-woke movie era had some good stuff in it that’s surprisingly relevant and counter-cultural by 2023 standards.
So first, here is a brief movie synopsis for those who may not have seen the movie: The first Tinkerbell movie was made in 2008. The story starts with Tinkerbell as a new fairy. She was a fairy who was born a certain way, as what’s called a tinker fairy, where she “tinkers” with things to build them. But she hates it. The main setting is in a magical place in Neverland called Pixie Hollow where there are other “talents” that other fairies have, such as water, animal, light, wind, or flower fairies. She struggles with who she is as a tinker fairy and who she wants to be, especially after finding out that tinker fairies don’t get to go to the Mainland for spring. She wants to be anything but a tinker fairy. She refused to accept the truth that this was actually who she was and instead stubbornly embraced her truth.
The entire movie is about her trying to be every other fairy type, anything other than who she was born to be. Her supportive friends knew she was a tinker and tried to tell her many times that this was who she was. Good for them. At the end of the movie, she finally accepts that she shouldn’t deny her true identity by trying to be something she’s not. She ends up happily embracing being a tinker fairy.
The Truth About Tinkerbell
I’m sure you already know what I’m getting at. The parallel to today’s identity crisis are clear, and quite the opposite message from this movie: you can’t change the truth to your truth.
Let me say this. First, I feel for those who struggle with their identity. There’s a deep and intense struggle to change who we are to be accepted by others or seen how we want to be seen. But there’s freedom in loving how God made you. And I mean how he actually made you. What I mean by that is some people might say, “But God made me with this identity! I didn’t choose to be a man in a woman’s body, or this race, or even this species!” I want to lovingly counter this idea with these questions:
- Says who?
- Where did you get that idea from?
- By what standard are you measuring that this is God’s will for your life and how He made you?
If God has revealed Himself, He did so in the person of Jesus. I didn’t make this claim. Jesus did. If Jesus is who He says He is, then how would we find out information about Him? Here’s the answer: The Bible. People that walked and talked with Jesus and witnessed His life, resurrection, and miracles recorded them, then died horrendous deaths, never denying any of it was false. In other words, if Jesus is everything He says He is, I trust the Book that tells me who He is and what He taught, and what He commanded His disciples to do and teach.
Identity in Christ
And what He says about how you are made matters when it comes to this topic: you were born one way, but He says to be born another way. He says to be born again.
“Jesus replied, ‘Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.’” John 3:3 (NIV)
He wants you to find your identity in Him, not yourself. He wants you to love who He is and how He made you, not make a God in your own image that likes what you like and loves what you love. Jesus came for you too and says that He is the bread of life. What He’s saying is that this world will not satisfy, and looking within isn’t sustainable. He’s the standard for what’s good, true, and fulfilling.
A Lesson from American Idol
On a harder-to-accept level, people living “their truth” can sometimes look forced and awkward. Like someone trying to be something we all know they aren’t. It reminds me of one of those American Idol auditions where someone goes in thinking they’re a fantastic singer because everyone around them was telling them they were a great singer. But they open their mouth, and it’s total cringe. What’s stunning is their denying the fact that they are an objectively bad singer. Perhaps the people around them were afraid to tell the truth because the person was too sensitive or emotionally fragile to handle tough feedback. Everyone knew they weren’t a star. But everyone went along with it, perhaps out of fear. I see the same principle when it comes to today’s identity crisis.
Now isn’t it interesting, and rather ironic, that we live in a world that says self-love is the battle cry of the day but then the same instigators want you to deny everything about who you are for a fleeting feeling that changes? There’s wisdom in accepting yourself for who you are, not denying it to fill a void.
Recommended Resources Related to this Topic
Correct, Not Politically Correct: About Same-Sex Marriage and Transgenderism by Frank Turek (Book, MP4, PPT)
Hollywood Heroes: How Your Favorite Movies Reveal God by Frank Turek & Zach Turek (Book)
Another Gospel? by Alisa Childers (book)
Defending Absolutes in a Relativistic World (Mp3) by Frank Turek
Is Morality Absolute or Relative? (Mp3), (Mp4), and (DVD) by Frank Turek
Does Love and Tolerance Equal Affirmation? (DVD) (Mp4) by Dr. Frank Turek
Melissa Dougherty is a Christian Apologist best known for her YouTube channel as an ex-new ager. She has two associate’s degrees, one in Early Childhood Multicultural Education, and the other in Liberal Arts. She also has a bachelor’s degree in Religious Studies at Southern Evangelical Seminary.