I’ve never been much of a Barbie fan. Not because I’m morally opposed to Barbie but I never had one growing up so she just wasn’t on my radar.
After having two boys I was thrilled to have a girl for two reasons 1) the clothes are so much cuter and b) I was excited to play with the toys of my youth again.
Don’t get me wrong. Front end loaders are really fun to play with but fashion plates have more of a draw for me.
My little girl will be four this year but I can remember her first Christmas. I was SO EXCITED to be able to shop the pink section of toys instead of the battery operated, noisy, transforming alien-truck-monster-spinning-battle-to-the-death section.
I lingered in the princess aisle and finally stopped in the Barbie section to see what I’ve been missing. I saw Barbie, Ken, some pre-teen relative named Kelly (or something), a dream house, a mustang, Barbie as a doctor, Barbie as a Vet, Barbie getting married, Barbie’s racially diverse friends, Barbie going to a Christmas party, etc
I double checked the aisle to make sure I wasn’t missing something. Where was Reverend Barbie? Did the Southern Baptists have control over Mattel so that Barbie could be whatever she wanted to be EXCEPT a spiritual leader?
This led me to question the entire spiritual life of Barbie (who is really quite old and doesn’t seem to be able to commit to a profession at all). Who was Barbie’s military chaplain when she was in the Army? Did she ever have to call in a clergy person when she was a doctor assisting a dying patient? Who was the officiant at her and Ken’s wedding?
Why is there no one in Barbie’s life to lead her into the more spiritual parts of this world? More specifically – has no one ever shared the good news of Jesus with Barbie?
And what does it mean for my daughter that Barbie can be anything from a plastic surgeon to a McDonald’s cashier and yet she has no chance of being clergy?
So I bought me a Barbie and I told her that God loves her. I told her that God has always loved her and wants her to realize that with God in her life she can be transformed so that the dream house and mustang aren’t the limit to her success. She can “do all things through Christ who strengthens her.” (Philippians 4:13)
I guess I did a great job because as you can see above, Barbie gave her life to Jesus and became an Ordained Deacon in the UMC. She lives in the youth room at Hopewell UMC. She gets her liturgical colors a bit confused at times but she (literally) sits at the feet of Jesus and hopes to see some real transformation going on in that room.
Today my daughter got a Doctor Barbie in her Happy Meal. I smiled knowing that no matter what Barbie’s calling truly is, she is on the right track. I’ve seen it myself and hope to see it in others as well before my calling here is done.
Until Everyone Hears,
What are your thoughts?