After watching Aphton Corbin’s Twenty Something on Disney+, I realized just how relatable this short film is to our society and ourselves. Gia, the film’s main character, is out at the club with her older sister Nicole to celebrate her 21st birthday. What’s different in this commonplace scenario, though, is that the Gia who’s on her driver’s license is not the same person who’s standing before the bouncer waiting to enter the club.
Technically, Gia’s a 21-year-old adult. Inside, however, she’s battling herself to understand what, exactly, it means to be an “adult.” Gia faces off against three younger versions of herself: her toddler, ten-year-old, and sixteen-year-old selves. We don’t actually meet the 21-year-old version of Gia until the end of the film, which perfectly represents just how much our younger selves play a part in our decision-making and feelings.
Gia tries to be what she thinks an adult should be—mature, focused, having everything in their life put together—instead of being who she truly is and not caring what others might think about her. Because of this act, Gia falls on her behind in front of the entire nightclub, which suddenly becomes silent. Embarrassed, Gia runs into the bathroom and hides in a stall, where she’s left to feel all her emotions with her younger selves.
This is something we can all relate to, i.e., needing to fit in and thus, living a lie to ensure that the next person doesn’t see our true, authentic self. But here’s the scary part: if we’re not careful to make sure we’re staying true to the person God created us to be, then we can live a life drowning ourselves in work, school, and even our personal lives. We can forget to live in the moment and not concern ourselves with what tomorrow may bring or pressure ourselves to be someone we’re not.
Twenty Something offers the viewer a deeper perspective on life. Frankly, none of us knows how tomorrow will go, even if we plan it all out. Jesus’ words in Matthew 6:25-27 make this evident:
Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?
This is a beautiful thing about growing up, to be able to go to God and lay our worries and troubles about life at his feet; to feel the weight of the world lifted from our shoulders because we have a God who wants to be a part of every moment of our lives and who never complains or becomes irritated. What’s more, we can have people around to remind us that we are not alone and that our experiences have been shared by others who have overcome them. After all, God explains that we are better together than we are by ourselves (Romans 12:4-5).
Nobody but God himself knows what tomorrow will bring, so we should not worry or pressure ourselves to figure out our next step. We do not need to stress ourselves out worrying about the cares of this world when we have a Father in Heaven who can take all our cares and worries away from us. God knew that we would try to plan our lives out, and while there’s nothing wrong with that, we must always include him in our plans because he knows exactly what will happen.
Know that in any season of your life, God is molding you and equipping you with all the necessary tools to endure life. The hard seasons may last for days, months, or even years. Through it all, we must remind ourselves that, though we may not understand why we are in a hard season, God is still in control, and with His help, we will get through it.
Trials and tribulations will come in our lives, but in knowing Jesus, we must remember that He understands our pain. To endure trials, we have to read the Bible and build an unwavering relationship with Jesus to get us through this hard season and the rest of our lives. Remember what 1 Peter 1:6-7 says: “So be truly glad.” There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you must endure many trials for a little while. But these trials will show that your faith is genuine, for “it is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold, though your faith is far more precious than mere gold.”
We’re all trying to figure out life and how to be an adult, and frankly, nobody has done it with perfection except Jesus himself. We must give ourselves grace and accept that we will not always get life right—and that’s perfectly okay because the beauty of life is getting back up and trying again. Besides, it’s okay to not have what society says you should be doing at your current age. Our purpose is bigger than society.
Once Gia realizes that she does not have to try and be someone she is not, she opens the bathroom stall and we finally meet the 21-year-old Gia. This part was so magical and gave me chills because being able to truly know who you are means that nobody can tell you otherwise. You understand that, while you’re not perfect, you’re making progress and desire to be a better version of yourself every day. As Gia and Nicole leave the bathroom, they enjoy the rest of their night at the nightclub, flaws and all.