Sunday, March 16, 2014

Let It Go

 The song Let It Go from Disney's Frozen has taken the world by storm. Or so it seems.

 Everyone seems to be singing it, many have been recording it themselves, and the rest of us are doomed to having it stuck in our heads.  I have heard it many times, and don't like it.  Many have tried to explain to me how it is a good song, and perfectly acceptable, but it still doesn't set right with me.  Some may think I'm too hard on it, or judging it too much... but I see it as a dangerous song, and herein I shall attempt to explain the reason why.

 "The snow glows white on the mountain tonight,
  not a footprint to be seen.
  A kingdom of isolation and it looks like I'm the queen.
  The wind is howling like this swirling storm inside.
  Couldn't keep it in, Heaven knows I tried.
  Don't let them in, don't let them see.
  Be the good girl you always have to be.
  Conceal, don't feel, don't let them know.
  Well now they know!"

 So far not much trouble. She seems to be lamenting a mistake made.  Except that last line... that's where the rebellion comes into her voice.

 "Let it go, let it go!
  Can't hold it back any more.
  Let it go, let it go!
  Turn away and slam the door.
  I don't care what they're going to say.
  Let the storm rage on.
  The cold never bothered me anyway."

 So whatever it was she was supposed to keep in, that got out... she is now yelling out in rebellion, saying she doesn't care.  She's going to "turn away and slam the door"... Rather than making right the wrong she was just lamenting - she is now walking out on responsibility.

 And, if what she did wasn't wrong, then she made it wrong by walking out instead of standing up and doing what was needed.

 Correct me if I'm wrong - but doesn't wrong doing - or at the very least, messing up "slightly"- require repentance and making it right?   Would it not be wrong to suddenly blurt out in frustration/anger about something and walk out, shunning responsibility?

 "It's funny how some distance,
  makes everything seem small.
  And the fears that once controlled me, can't get to me at all
  It's time to see what I can do,
  to test the limits and break through.
  No right, no wrong, no rules for me.
  I'm free!"

 Ah, here we go. Being free from fears is not at all wrong... but being free from rules, right and wrong, now there's the problem.
 Wrong is defined as sin, and sin is defined as lawlessness, the law being the law of God.

 1 John 3:4
  Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.

 As for being free... freedom is not found in rebellion. Never has been. 

 John 8:32
  And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
 Romans 8:2
  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.

 "Let it go, let it go.
  I am one with the wind and sky.
  Let it go, let it go.
  You'll never see me cry.
  Here I'll stand, and here I'll stay.
  Let the storm rage on."

 So now, after openly declaring her rebellion, she is stubbornly "standing her ground" in rebellion.
 Proverbs 17:11
  An evil man seeketh only rebellion: therefore a cruel messenger shall be sent against him.

 "My power flurries through the air into the ground.
  My soul is spiraling in frozen fractals all around
  And one thought crystallizes like an icy blast
  I'm never going back; the past is in the past!"

Here's another problem with the song that I have yet to see anyone even attempt to explain away... "My power" and she's building a castle of ice without a single tool... it's all with the waving of her arms.  That my friends, no matter how you want to view it, is witchcraft.

 Galatians 5:19-21
  Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,
  Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,
  Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

 "Let it go, let it go.
  And I'll rise like the break of dawn.
  Let it go, let it go
  That perfect girl is gone
  Here I stand, in the light of day.
  Let the storm rage on!
  The cold never bothered me anyway...."

 The whole song is about her or, for the others who are picking up on the song, it's about "me" what "I" can do, what "I" think is best, what "I" want.  It's not about helping others, it's not about serving the Almighty Creator. It's about "me".

 Now I know what some are going to say.  "The song is out of context. It's not about rebellion if you have it in context"  Alright, I'll grant that.  But if you need context to understand that it isn't rebellious or selfish, then why is the song being taken out of context and sung all around the world? Why are there video clips, and recordings of the song by itself?

 Rebellion is something sinful human nature gravitates to.  If this song is only good in context, but not alone, then it shouldn't be listened to, and especially shouldn't be being endorsed by Christians, or those who profess to be Christians.

 Our culture is a shambles already, and this song is only drawing people deeper into rebellion which isn't doing anything toward cultural reform.

 This song may be alright in context (which I find hard to believe, but will grant it for sake of argument having never seen the movie) but it is being taken out of context, and being endorsed, when lyrically, it encourages sin in all who hear it.    This is not pleasing to God, and least of all, when coming from His children.

 Philippians 4:8
  Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. 

 There is no virtue expressed, or even mentioned in this song.  In which case I say - Let it go.

20 comments:

  1. Wow Hallie! This is a great way to look at it! It really makes you think. Thanks for posting! :)

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  2. Oh my goodness. You are so right about this. You know what's funny is I have never felt comfortable with this song, although I wasn't exactly sure why except that she says things like, "that perfect girl is gone," and how "no right no wrong, no rules for me, I'm free." And I know that it's fitting for the movie, but when you take it out of the movie (like you said), it's so wrong and rebellious!
    Thanks so much for this post. I wish every Christian could read it.
    ~Samantha

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    1. You're welcome. Thanks for taking the time to read it :)

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  3. Should you really be making judgments on the entire movie based off of this one song, though...? The actual plot of the movie itself deals with self-sacrificial love, and has several Christian themes interwoven in it...

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    1. Yes. That may be true. I haven't seen the movie and so cannot make any judgments about it. All I'm analyzing here is how damaging the song itself is when taken out of context. :)

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  4. Interesting, I shared this article with some friends. Having not seen the film myself, here is another article which seems to come from a similar perspective, but without the same conclusion.

    http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/trevinwax/2014/02/17/missing-the-point-of-frozens-let-it-go/

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    1. I have read that article before, and thought it was well written. Because of that, I might consider seeing the movie given the chance. But the song by itself, out of context, is very damaging.

      Thanks for sharing the link!

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  5. I have never seen the film nor have I heard the song until I read it here on your blog, but I can certainly see your point. A dangerous song.
    Lauren K. Lotter

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  6. "There is no virtue expressed, or even mentioned in this song." But I disagree. There is at least one virtue in this song.
    "I'm never going back, the past is in the past." This is a great virtue that many should learn. That the past does not define us. one of the best illustrations that shows this would be a human passing from death to life through Jesus Christ. The human's past was full of sin and death, but now that he/she has Christ, he/she has life and is learning holiness.

    Now about this part of the song.
    "It's time to see what I can do,
    to test the limits and break through.
    No right, no wrong, no rules for me.
    I'm free!"
    You need to understand that this gift that she has, has never been tested or tried. She is seeing what she can do with this gift. If I had the gift of teaching, I would want to explore what I could do with this gift. There is no right or wrong way to explore a gift. Now I will agree that people can and have abused their gifts, but that is not what she is trying to do in the movie. She is just seeing what she can do with this gift that she has.

    You talk a lot about how rebellious she is. But I would disagree that all rebellion is wrong. When Luther rebelled against Catholicism, was that wrong? If I rebel against my government because they are promoting non-christian ideas, or if I rebel against the worldliness of this world, am I sinning? In the movie, and in the song, she's rebelling against not using the gifts that were given her. Is that wrong to do? Should you not use the gifts that were given to you?

    You do bring up some great thoughts though. That we should be careful of what we listen to and what it is promoting

    Keep up the great writing,
    Andrew

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    1. Andrew,
      You make some good points. While I hadn't considered many of them, I would have to say there is a difference between kinds of rebellion.
      Going against the norm that isn't wrong to begin with, would be defined as rebellion, and that is the attitude most (that I have seen) are getting from this song.
      Going against the norm because it is wrong, is called regeneration, rather than rebellion.

      Sorry if that isn't quite to your point, but my mind isn't working the best at the moment.

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  7. Hey Hallie,
    You said that the character from Frozen was a practitioner of witchcraft because she had a unnatural "power." Assuming that this is indeed your viewpoint, would that make all superheroes practitioners of witchcraft too? Just curious.

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    1. Jack,
      Superheroes who have unnatural power I would dare say are at least borderline "witches". If they have unnatural strength, or virtues, and don't give credit to God, they are (at best) leading people astray, making them followers of men rather than God.

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  8. But Hallie, Sampson had superhuman strength, the Apostles had supernatural healing powers, and all the prophets performed miracles. Did that make them witches?
    Also superheros use their powers for good (unlike witches who do it for evil purposes). You can't tell me that Captain America saving an innocent child from harm or killing a bad guy with one blow is the same thing as a bunch of ugly old women with huge noses and brooms, stirring a big black cauldron ,calling out curses and dancing maniacally. You see there's a difference between simply using your "power" or "gift" and performing witchcraft. I for example, know some martial arts. If I were to use this "power" in defense of myself or another am I performing "witchcraft?" Also, you never once define "witchcraft" biblically in your post. You only named some things that could be construed in our typical western thinking as such. The Bible defines witchcraft as rebellion against God (I don't know the verse off the top of my head)- not rebellion against man. If you had watched the movie you would've seen that if anything, the character who sung let it go was venting her frustration because everyone in her life up until that point had told her to not use her "power" at all- "hiding your lamp under a bush." Correct me if I'm wrong, but couldn't "burying your talent"- as everyone in the story told her to do- be construed as witchcraft? So did the character initially respond to her problems in the right manner? no, I'll grant you that. but in the end she did. she righted her wrongs and was reconciled to those around her. All, this to say, I think your accusation of witchcraft is a little off base and I think the movie may be worth your reconsideration. Thanks.

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    1. Jack,
      I'm not denying that people can have superhuman powers. I'm simply questioning the source.
      In 1 Samuel 15:23 it says "For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the Lord, he hath also rejected thee from being king."
      Rebellion against what? God and His word. Show me the things this girl was doing, or something similar in the Word, and I'll see your point.
      My point is, in taking this song out of context we are teaching things that aren't right. Maybe if the song is in context it isn't wrong, I'll grant that. Just keep it in context and it's fine.

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    2. Again, in the movie she's not rebelling so much as she's venting her frustration. In the movie, (which is why I said to reconsider watching it because it would give you context) from the time she was born everyone tells her that it is wrong to use her ability (e.g.- burying her talent). Eventually she can't handle the pressure, she messes up, uses her ability, embarrasses herself in front of others, runs away, messes up again, and then realizes that using her power isn't wrong in the proper context- hence "letting it go." the rest of the movie is spent showing how she rights her wrongs- all while weaving together the themes of rebuilding sibling relationships and sacrificial- perhaps even Christ-like- love.

      Also, we have to understand that this is a fantasy movie- it operates on a different reality than we do. Powers that could only be gained through "witchcraft" in our world are merely innate in their's. It doesn't mean that there wrong it just means they operate off of a different reality than us.

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    3. I might watch the movie some time. But the whole argument I've seen for the song is that it's fine *in context*. My whole argument is that it is dangerous when *taken out* of context.
      Just because they have a different reality then we do, doesn't make right and wrong any less right and wrong. We need to be extremely careful what values we are portraying in the movies we make. Simple as that. Even when it is a secular movie, we still need to run it through Scripture to see if it's acceptable. If there are parts that aren't in line with God's word, then we need to be careful of them, and at least - if nothing else - make sure it's clear that those parts are not Biblically sound.

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    4. Hallie,
      You're right, taken out of context it may be wrong- but guess what? Every little kid who sings that song has seen the movie which means they know the proper context! And you're absolutely right just because fantasy exists a different reality doesn't make right and wrong any less right and wrong- wasn't arguing that. Again, I completely agree that We need to be careful what values we are portraying in the movies we make. All I wanted to address was that I think you took a few things out of context, particularly that bit about witchcraft. I can completely see why you would take issue with this song having not seen the movie; but again, most if not all of the people singing the song have seen the movie and therefore have the context. That's all that I'm saying.

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    5. Jack,
      Alright. I give in. Maybe I did take something out of context. It wasn't intentional. Just merely pointing out the issues I have with the song when taken out of context. I can't comment on it *in* context because I haven't seen the movie yet. My main point is the song is being taken out of context, it is being circulated by itself, apart from the movie where people can hear it who haven't seen the movie. That is damaging. If it's a good song, lets keep it in context so we can plainly see it's a good song, instead of leaving it open for debate.

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  9. Hi. I know I'm entering this conversation late, but anyway... I also haven't seen the movie (though I've heard the plot explained multiple times), but when I read the lyrics, (without knowing the context) I interpreted it more like she was rejecting *society's* standards of what she should and shouldn't do, rather than God's absolute moral standard. It is a kids movie, after all, and it's Disney. A lot of Disney movies have in them this feel-good idea of not squelching who you are, and not being bound by everything everyone else expects you to do and to be. I think a lot of people who don't know the context would be more likely to interpret "Let it go!" as a "be yourself" type message. It's a kind of shallow message outside of the Biblical context of being made unique in the image of God, and it of course needs to be balanced with our legitimate responsibilities, but even on its own, without knowing the story, it's not necessarily a message of rebellion.

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