As with almost everything in life, biblical themes and story lines can be picked out of movies whether they were put there intentionally or not. There are always little hints that could point to a Scripture or a story line that follows a similar pattern found in the Bible. Intentional or not, references can be found an application can be made. This holds true with the new Disney movie Frozen 2. The sequel to the original Frozen is, in my opinion, an outstanding film and it is no doubt without references to Scripture intentional or not. We’re going to explore some of these references and patterns and we might be surprised at how applicable they can be to our spiritual lives. Let’s dig in.
Assuming you know the storyline of Frozen 2, there are so many different paths we can take but I want to focus on one in particular. Specifically, I want to discuss the powers Elsa contains and how this development can be compared to our powers we have in the Holy Spirit. There are certain questions Elsa needs the answers to that are at the core of the movie like, “Where does her powers come from?”, “Why does she have these powers?”, and “What should she do with the power she has?”. The plot of Frozen 2 revolves around the quest to find the answers to these questions and it comes as a surprising twist to most fans. However, I want to ask us these same questions about our power we have in the Holy Spirit. Where does our power come from? Why do we have this power? What do we do with the power? Of course, we don’t have icy powers shooting of our hands that Elsa does but we do have certain gifts that the Holy Spirit gives us. We can think of these gifts as “powers” that God gives us to use for His glory and the glory of His kingdom. This is what we are going to explore in this article.
So let’s start with the question, “Where does our gift/power come from?”. Well, obviously, the gifts that we have come from the Holy Spirit. In Frozen 2, Elsa soon finds out after a great journey, that her mother had some connection to the magical powers of the Enchanted Forest. We are left to believe that her mother was the one who, through bloodline, passed the powers on to Elsa. It could also be that her powers were a gift from the other spirits as a reward for her mother saving her father. It isn’t quite clear in the movie, but Scripture is certainly clear about how we receive our gifts. We receive our gifts and powers when we are given the Holy Spirit.
Acts 1:8, “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
Luke 24:49, “And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.”
Ephesians 1:13, “In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit”.
Now that we know our power comes from the Holy Spirit, the next question we need to answer is, “Why do we have this power?”. It seems to be in the movie, Elsa has these powers because she is what is known as the “lost fifth spirit”. She becomes a bridge between the natural and spiritual world that brings all of the other powers together for the good of all. She also has these powers, we come to find out, to break a curse that was set long ago on the Enchanted Forest because of a horrible act done by the Arendellian leader on the Northuldra people. This act caused the magical forces to outrage and cause a curse of fog on the forest where no one gets in or out. Elsa is the one who can break into the fog and reach Ahtohallan to find the truth. With the help of Anna and their friends, they break the curse and set everything free and it ends with everyone alive, happy, and at peace. So Elsa was given these powers for obvious fitting reasons, but why do we have certain powers through the Spirit?
There are many different spiritual gifts that the Spirit can give us and it’s all according to God decides. 1 Corinthians 12 lists many different kinds of gifts, certainly not comprehensive, and it also gives reasons why these gifts are important. Let’s read the latter part of chapter 12 and then we’ll break it down.
“Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. 13 For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. 14 Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.
15 Now if the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? 18 But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. 19 If they were all one part, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, but one body.
21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!” 22 On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, 24 while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, 25 so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. 26 If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.
27 Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it. 28 And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? 30 Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues? Do all interpret? 31 Now eagerly desire the greater gifts.”
-1 Corinthians 12:12-31
So Paul says that as Christians, we are all part of one body but individually we are many parts, just like a human body. There are arms, legs, eyes, ears, teeth, fingers, etc. Even though these parts are different and have different functions, they all come together and are still part of one body. We are the body of Christ and each of us has been given a special gift or power that is needed in more ways than we could ever imagine. The gifts that the Spirit gives us are given to us for specific reasons, just as arms or legs have specific functions for the body, we have specific functions in the body of Christ. As a whole, spiritual gifts are given to build up the body of Christ, each in their own way (Ephesians 4:11-13). Whether it is teaching, shepherding, serving, encouraging, etc, all gifts are given for the betterment of the church and all of creation. Each gift is like a glimpse of heaven when used to its full potential. You may be going to a church, you may be involved in a group at church or in a couple. But it’s not until we start to use the gifts we were given in the way they are supposed to be used do we realize how much we have to offer the church and the world. Elsa never realized the power she had until she was determined to find out. We will not realize our potential, until we are determined to use it in ways we could never imagine.
Now that we know where are gifts come from and why we have them, let’s talk about what to do with them and what it actually means when we use our gifts. If the reason we have gifts is to build each other up and encourage each other, why is that important? Well, When we build up the church, we encourage each other and then more opportunities arise to share the kingdom and gospel of Jesus with the rest of the world. The world is broken, needing to be restored to its original state of perfection. Jesus will bring that perfection one day (Acts 3:21). While we are here and waiting, however, we can bring glimpses and little pockets of heaven everywhere we go. When we use our gifts, we are using the power of the Holy Spirit to bring heaven to earth and share Jesus with the rest of the world. In all reality, when we use our gifts, we are showing people the power of God within us and furthering God’s kingdom. When we use our gifts, we portray a glimpse of the restoration of all creation through Jesus who will bring the full restoration. We are actually taking part in a grand restoration plan when we use our gifts.
Just as Elsa and her friends embarked on a journey that brought them into a plan to restore the magical and mystical forces of the forest, we too get to take part in a plan to restore creation. We may not have icy powers or ride on a mystical water horse, but we can have access to powers far beyond our imaginations. We get to take part in God’s great redemptive plan to restore all creation and we do that by using the powers given to us through the Holy Spirit.
To recap, our powers come from God. We have them to build each other up and strengthen one another and to bring the gospel of Jesus Christ to others. We use them to do these wonderful things so that we have a part in the restoration of all creation. Just as Elsa and her friends had powers to help restore a mystical forest, we have the power to help bring restoration to others and the world through Jesus Christ. There can be many similarities found between the Bible and Disney’s Frozen 2, and we will explore more in the future. For now, just as Elsa had to learn the origin of her powers and the reason for her powers and how to use them, we must also learn the why and how of our gifts through the Holy Spirit.