When I was a child I loved to visit my grandparents in Baldwin, Michigan. It was a place of rest. They lived out in the middle of nowhere. Trees surrounded their home; there were no roads to the house only fire trails, which were made in case the trees caught on fire. It was beautiful, quiet, and peaceful.
I remember one year in particular, I was 13 years old, I had gone up there with my cousin, Tony, for a couple of weeks. One evening my grandparents decided it was time to teach us both how to dance. Grandma was my cousin’s partner, and grandpa was mine. They taught us how to Waltz, Jitter Bug, Twist, and slow dance. We had a lot of fun that night; that is one of my fondest memories with them.
My grandpa instructed me by telling me that one key thing to dancing well is how the couple communicates with each other. Back when my grandparents were learning to dance it was not politically incorrect to assume that the man would lead, and the female would follow.
It was the man’s job as the leader to send his partner cues to let her know what her next move was, and it was up to the woman to respond to those cue’s. The more a couple danced together, the better she understood his cues and the easier it was for her to follow his lead. Another key thing my grandparents taught me is that there can only be one leader in a dance. When both partners try to lead it becomes a dysfunctional dance.
Christ asks all of us to dance the dance of life with Him. It is his will that no one should go through life alone. He asks us to dance with Him in different ways, but ultimately we are all asked.
There are different ways we may respond to his request to dance, but there is only one way that it goes well for us.
#1 We may reject his request to the dance. Christ is a gentleman; he will not force us to do anything we don’t want to do.
#2 We may agree to dance, but as he is trying to teach us how to Waltz, we are too busy doing the Jitter Bug to even notice we aren’t really dancing with him.
#3 We may agree to dance with Christ, but then we try to lead him. This never works. He will not follow our lead.
#4 We agree to dance with Christ, and we allow him to teach us new steps. This is when we learn to dance with beauty and grace. This is the only way we can rest peacefully in his arms. Dancing with Christ and allowing him to lead, is the only way to successfully dance through life.
I used to think this was a progression of our relationship with Christ, but over the years I recognize that there is a constant request from Christ to teach me new dance steps. There are still times he asks me to teach me something new yet I ignore him, I don’t want to take that step, or I am too busy trying to do my own thing to cooperate. There are still times I try to lead him rather than follow his lead. But I have found that resting in his arms and allowing Christ to lead the dance of life is the only way to dance in this life with peace.
As we start a new year it is a great time to think about our life dance, and how well we are doing. If we are already dancing with Christ it is also a good time to become aware of our dance with Him. Are we following or trying to lead? Are we learning new dances? Are we trying to dance the wrong dance? Anxiety is almost always a sign of not resting or trusting in God’s sovereignty. As I have reflected over my dance, I have decided on some things I hope to change for the New Year. I hope you will join me in that reflection. If you have not said yes to dancing with Christ, perhaps you would consider it. Olive Church would love to answer any questions you have about starting to dance through life with Christ.
Our services begin at 10:00 AM EST on Sunday mornings. We have open arms to anyone who is seeking.