“…he was driven into the desert by the Spirit to be tempted by the devil.” Luke 4:1b-2a
As one would expect with a title like this, temptation runs rampant in The Devil Wears Prada. Unfortunately, we don’t realize we saw the temptations until it’s too late.
The movie follows the journey of young Andrea “Andy” Sachs (Anne Hathaway) as she begins her career as journalist by working as the second assistant for the cold, impersonal Miranda Priestly (Meryl Streep, in one of her best roles to date), the matriarch of “Runway,” considered by those in the movie as one of the most influential fashion magazines around the world.
Initially, Andy guards herself against this “devil” of a boss. She says she won’t succumb to her impossible standards and petty lifestyle; because she won’t give in, she is sadly mistreated by Miranda (as well as fellow executive assistant Emily, played by Emily Blunt) to the point of wanting to quit altogether.
Andy’s first real temptation, we later see, was the temptation to stay on staff at “Runway” because it will be good for her resume; despite a humiliation at the hands of Miranda and others, she gives into this temptation, and in the process takes on a brand new persona so that she can survive the daily grind in this cruel fashion business. Miranda eventually notices this transformation and gives her some modest praise, which Andy has craved for months. One task after another and one success after another, Andy slips deeper into this warped and cold world until she is faced with the reality: she has finally become as manipulative and underhanded as the boss she swore she’d never become.
It was a slippery slope full of good intentions that led her there.
This is the way for most of us. The need for acceptance and credibility in this world motivates us in many of our actions. In a world of six billion people, how are we to make our mark? But what we fail to see is how these small acts to survive and thrive could possibly lead to our own undoing. The small acts to get ahead in this world may seem insignificant, but when they pile on top of another, we fall farther from God.
But there is always a way out. No matter how deep down the rabbit hole we may go, we can still make the choice to turn ourselves around. We can still take a look at our journey and see whether or not we’ve made good choices, and if we have not, God always gives us a way home. In the end, Andy chose to reject this way of life, even though it meant a lower-paying job, a botched resume, and friendships she needed to repair.
The path out of the devil’s grasp is never easy, but it’s always possible.
The small choices get us into a mess with the “devil,” but one firm choice the other way will get us closer to our God. Ours is a God of second chances, and we are called, like the prodigal son of the Scriptures, to turn our lives around the come home to God.