Sunday, April 27, 2014

The Dancing Lord

Prior to my salvation, I often went dancing in nightclubs and also worked as a DJ in a few of them. After getting saved, I continued going to clubs for a couple years but eventually stopped. I could no longer put up with smoke-filled rooms plus listening to music with explicit lyrics.

One reason many sinners resist Christianity is the mistaken idea God doesn’t want us to have fun. Some religious leaders have a problem with dancing in general. When I worked for Billy Graham’s World Wide Pictures, one film we distributed called “The Homecoming” featured students at a high school dance. A pastor who planned to show “The Homecoming” in his church changed his mind because he was afraid the dancing would offend his congregation.

A more famous movie that dealt with this issue is “Footloose.” Based on actual events that happened in a Oklahoma town, an overzealous pastor had convinced his city council to ban public dancing. He was eventually challenged by a young man (played by Kevin Bacon) who read the following passages from the Bible...

“Let them praise His name with the dance...” - Psalm 149:3

“Then David danced before the Lord with all his might...” - 2 Samuel 6:14

“To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven...A time to weep, and a time to laugh; A time to mourn, and a time to dance.” - Ecclesiastes 3:1,4

Dancing is a natural expression that shouldn’t be suppressed unless it entices illicit behavior. I’ve seen the original “Footloose” movie but only parts of the 2011 remake. A couple scenes from the latter I found inspiring. Unfortunately, much of the dancing reminded me of the “twerking” Miley Cyrus made famous at last year’s MTV Video Music Awards. That type of dancing should only be reserved for married couples in the privacy of their home. 1 Thessalonians 5:22 (KJV) says, “Abstain from all appearance of evil.”

In recent years I deejayed a few parties playing Christian music. Because the music and dancing gloried the Lord, supernatural manifestations have happened. In Matthew 11:16-17, Jesus spoke against a group of young people who wouldn’t dance...

“But to what shall I liken this generation? It is like children sitting in the marketplaces and calling to their companions, and saying:‘We played the flute for you, and you did not dance; We mourned to you, and you did not lament.’”

Church meetings bring freedom when congregation members do more than just sit or stand still during praise and worship. The Lord wants to dance with His people. This short article called “Asking for Guidance” by Pauline Lamarre illustrates this truth...

When I meditated on the word guidance, I kept seeing “dance” at the end of the word. I remember reading that doing God’s will is a lot like dancing.

When two people try to lead, nothing feels right. The movement doesn’t flow with the music, and everything is quite uncomfortable and jerky. When one person relaxes and lets the other lead, both bodies begin to flow with the music. One gives gentle cues, perhaps with a nudge to the back or by pressing lightly in one direction or another. It’s as if two become one body, moving beautifully. The dance takes surrender, willingness, and attentiveness from one person and gentle guidance and skill from the other.

When I saw “G,” in guidance, I thought of God, followed by “u” and “i.” And it hit me: God, let’s u (you), and I dance.

Worship leader Kevin Prosch wrote a song with the lyrics “Lord of the dance/You're the dancing Lord.” Let’s dance with Him today!

“They send forth their little ones like a flock, and their children dance.” - Job 21:11

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