“Show me your ways, O Lord, teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.” Psalm 25:4-5 (NIV)
A lot of what I have learned about faith has happened in ballroom dance class. As one who had studied jazz, tap, and ballet, I was excited when my husband Scott signed us up for lessons. I was certain that I would quickly learn the patterns. On the first lesson, however, I received a rude awakening. We were informed that there is a strict rule in ballroom proclaiming that the leader is in charge. I was horrified. “You mean I can only move when he says so? And I can only turn when he decides?” As the one who had studied dance, it didn’t seem fair. For awhile, it wasn’t much fun. Once, he waltzed me into a pole because he had not yet learned how to turn. Many other times, the dance fell apart because I couldn’t/ wouldn’t/ didn’t want to follow.
Now, years later, I find joy in being a follower. I have discovered a certain freedom within the following. I have discovered that I can follow in my own unique way. There are interesting things I can do with my hands; I can even syncopate the steps. I am not burdened with the stress of planning patterns, but my job is to pay attention and be ready to walk, slide, spin, or swivel. Magic happens when the leading and following are synched together.
This idea of the leading and following has helped me think about my faith life. God is the perfect leader who always knows what’s ahead. God is in charge of the universe whether I like it or not. Anytime and every time I try to lead my own life, following my own will instead of God’s, I become tired, and stressed. What a joy to discover that God wants to lead all of us to abundant life! My job, then, as a follower of Christ, is to pay attention to the leading of God’s Spirit through prayer, study, worship, and service. Let us celebrate the dance of eternal life!
Prayer focus: dancers
Prayer: Lord, help me to seek your will and not my own. Open my heart and mind to ways that I might follow you in every aspect of my life.