Who comes to mind when you think of someone dancing? I shared a few of my favorites in the last post, but there are certainly others. A few are found in photos with this post, but who is your favorite couple?
I didn’t grow up in a family that danced or even believed in dancing, but by the time I was in high school those more rigid rules had softened. That was a great thing except I didn’t know how to dance and when I went to the few choral balls connected with our high school choir, I am not really sure that the guys did either. They sort of walked in time to the music.
I loved the musicals our choirs produced every year and some of the dancing choreography was so beautiful. (No, I wasn’t chosen for any of those parts.)
A part of me had fallen in love with Cinderella dancing with the prince, just as I had when Yul Brynner and Deborah Kerr floated around the dance floor in The King and I. Such images left me always wishing I could be swept away in a dance even though I had no idea how to dance or who might dance with me.
When my husband and I were working full-time jobs, going to graduate school at night, and handling the responsibility of our household and children in college, we had a chance to take some ballroom dancing lessons. We both agreed it would be a great way to relax and have fun in the midst of such a hectic season.
I don’t recall how many lessons we had, but enough to start to enjoy it more than the first night we stepped onto the floor. One of the things that helped us both was when we each danced with one of the instructors. For me, that was really great fun because I just needed to follow the instructor’s lead no matter what he did or where he went. I also knew he knew exactly what to do and how to do it. I trusted him and forgot about myself.
Sometimes the challenge for those of us not naturally gifted at dancing is our own self-consciousness. I certainly felt that way as someone who didn’t know how to dance. Because I felt that way, my focus was not on the music but on me. Little wonder that my first attempts did not go well (especially if my partner felt the same way).
So how do I know we were made for dancing or that we might one day be called upon to dance?
One answer can be found in Psalm 149:3 NIV:
“Let them praise his name with dancing and make music to him with timbrel and harp.”
If you read my post from November 2, 2016, I shared the image of our relationship with Jesus was like a dance that He had invited us to enjoy with Him. The image might be both exciting and terrifying based on how we view dancing or our ability to dance and that points to one of the problems.
When Jesus invites us to dance, it is not dependent on our skill or ability. If we trust Him and His ability, all we need to do is take His hand and fall into His arms. He will do the rest! We can focus on looking in His eyes and listening to His whispers in our ear, sensing His love as He holds us close to Him. If we let Him lead, no one will ever know we have never had dance lessons. I know that is true because my instructor in the ballroom dance lessons made me look amazing when he danced with me even though I didn’t know anything at all at the beginning.
Would the images I have suggested ever happen? Perhaps not, but the principles related to the image of dancing with Him still hold true for us.
Our focus needs to shift from ourselves to Him.
We need to trust Him and His leadership for each step.
We need to accept His invitation to move closer to Him.
We also need to feel deep love and passion for Christ.
I love the words of Martha Graham:
“Great dancers are not great because of their technique. They are great because of their passion.”
Are we passionate about Him?