musings from linda 10/21/22
“May I have the pleasure of this dance?”
In 7th grade ballroom dancing school when asked that question, I accepted nervously — fervently hoping my feet were going to remember the patterns of those steps we’d just learned — and then woodenly made my way around the dance floor concentrating on “step, step, close... step, step, close... step, step, close....”
Contrast that with watching toddlers react to the beat of music... Unselfconsciously, their bodies move with total lightness and joy as they allow their spirits to respond to what seems to be a divine inner invitation to SOAR... They smile and wave their arms and stomp their feet with total abandon! What happens to that inner lightness of spirit when we grow up? When does stodginess or infatuation with having to follow a set of rules or the obsession to be PERFECT show up and take us over? God calls us daily to delight in the spiritual dance of life — yearning to teach us divine steps if we will only allow ourselves to be led! In 1963, English songwriter Sydney Carter wrote a text to the Shaker hymn “Simple Gifts” and called it LORD OF THE DANCE. In the text, Jesus tells the whole story of his life and in the refrain — almost as a “piper” — he joyfully calls us to join him in dancing the patterns that he lived:
“Dance, then, wherever you may be I am the Lord of the dance, said he And I’ll lead you all wherever you may be And I’ll lead you all in the dance, said he!“
If you listen to this link, you will hear a MOST lighthearted rendition! — exuberantly sung in the spirit to which Jesus is calling us. Each new moment he is asking — — — “MAY I HAVE THIS DANCE???”
What will our answer be?