God of the Fairy Tale: Finding Truth in the Land of Make-Believe by Jim Ware, WaterBrook Press, 2003 (184 pages).
In Jim Ware’s God of the Fairytale: Finding Truth in the Land of Make-Believe, Ware reminds us why we are never too old for fairy tales. Beginning with a scene between J. R. R. Tolkein and C. S. Lewis, Ware goes on to illustrate chapter-by-chapter why Tolkein’s statement that the story of Christ fulfills all other stories, myths, and fairy tales is true. In fairy tales such as “Cinderella,” “The Bremen Town Musicians,” and “The Little Match-Girl,” Ware shows how each story illustrates how life is then goes on to show an important biblical truth.
Fairy tales do not deal in rose colored glasses and blissful utopia. In tales such as “Hansel and Gretel,” “Jack and the Beanstalk,” and “Snow White,” we see how cruel and brutal the world can be. Abandonment, kidnapping, murder, jealousy, and cannibalism are some of the gruesome themes the fairy tales explore. But just as God does not leave humanity in it’s own sin and consequences, so the fairy tales do not leave Hansel and Gretel in the witch’s clutches, or Cinderella in the ashes. Ware does a good job of seeing grace in the tales, and then goes on to show how that grace can work in our lives.
This book reminds us of the power of story through all cultures, and reminds us that we, too, need to tell our stories, not white-wash them, and point out the places where our lives have been graced. Most often those moments of grace happen in the dark and fear-filled places of our lives.