One of the many gifts of having children is being reacquainted with story telling with pictures. There are many movies that I have gotten the privilege to watch over and over with the gift of understanding the reflections of the pillars of truth. This understanding has allowed me to process how it can apply to my life and/or be a tool to share life principles with my kids.
One of those movies has been the Frozen series. In Frozen 2, there is a scene where all hope is lost for Anna. Relationships are gone, the dream is dead, she is alone and isolated and the clarity of the path is gone. The mantra in that moment is reflected in the song, The Next Right Thing. The song’s message is to simply focus on taking one step at a time when all seems lost.
What is interesting is how art can imitate life and life can imitate art. I’ve learned more about the backstory of Frozen as documented by Disney and found that this movie really imitated their experience.
The journey to release Frozen 2 from a logistics/organizational level and a personal level was not an easy journey. The writers, Jennifer Lee and Chris Buck, shared their views about this particular scene of the movie. They shared the story of how Chris’s son died in an accident the same time that Frozen 1 was released. Chris simultaneously experienced joy of a work accomplished and the grief of losing his beloved son at the same time. How did he navigate? One step at a time.
Some moments in our lives call for a level of courage in the midst of pain that we don’t think we have. In those moments of deep despair where all hope is loss, the gift that we can give ourselves is to find the next right thing. Whether it’s eating a meal, taking a shower, or giving ourselves grace to rest that day, its small but significant. Let us not discount that small step.
A few years back, I went through one of my darkest nights. I experienced deep betrayal and the way was lost. I couldn’t see a way forward. I was face to face with my inner loudly shouting desperation at its deepest core level. In that moment, I allowed myself to lay on the floor, weep and listen to worship music.
I knew that someday I would look back on that moment with a different perspective. So I committed to my future self, that I would just be in that moment. All I had to give were my tears; being still and committing to trust Truth even though I could not see.
That was enough. That was more than enough. It was the next right thing that unlocked the gifts of today.
Lyrics of Do the Next Right Thing
… I’ve seen dark before
But not like this
This is cold
This is empty
This is numb
The life I knew is over
The lights are out
I’m ready to succumb
… I follow you around
I always have
But you’ve gone to a place I cannot find
This grief has a gravity
It pulls me down
But a tiny voice whispers in my mind
“You are lost, hope is gone
But you must go on
And do the next right thing”
… Can there be a day beyond this night?
I don’t know anymore what is true
I can’t find my direction, I’m all alone
The only star that guided me was you
How to rise from the floor
When it’s not you I’m rising for?
Just do the next right thing
Take a step, step again
It is all that I came to do
The next right thing
… I won’t look too far ahead
It’s too much for me to take
But break it down to this next breath
This next step
This next choice is one that I can make
… So I’ll walk through this night
Stumbling blindly toward the light
And do the next right thing
And with the dawn, what comes then
When it’s clear that everything will never be the same again?
Then I’ll make the choice
To hear that voice
And do the next right thing