Post Sabbatical Reflections

Last October, I felt led to take a sabbatical from my blog and email community for a season. That decision came after a soul searching conversation with my friend Marlita Hill, who has a way of helping draw out from me my heart concerns as well as hopes. You can read more about that conversation here.

Now, I’m standing at the other end of that sabbatical and it’s time to share the gifts that came out of that time with the hope that it will encourage you.

First of all, Continue reading “Post Sabbatical Reflections”

Flash Sale: Choreography Training/Dance of Healing

choreography basics online schoolThis is a super last minute announcement, but it’s such a good deal that I wanted to post it, in case you are willing to act quickly to save on registration. Jocelyn Richard, who has taught me so much of what I know about worship dance, has a flash sale ending this evening.

She’s offering Choreography Basics and the Dance of Healing online courses (self study) for the price of one course. Honestly, I can’t think of any two courses more relevant at this time.

Firstly, if you are preparing to dance for the holidays, you’ll get creative ideas for powerful choreography from the Choreography Basics Course. It was when I was choreographing a dance for Christmas five years ago that I found one of Jocelyn’s choreography tutorials on Youtube. I watched her and said to myself, “I want to dance like her.” Her expressive choreography and skill combined were powerful and moving. I am not kidding when I say that watching that video transformed my dance. Continue reading “Flash Sale: Choreography Training/Dance of Healing”

Dance in Thanks for our Freedom

live as free people wdmHappy 4th of July. I encourage you to find some time today (maybe just before going to bed), to dance a prayer of thanks for the incredible freedom we enjoy in our country and to pray for our leaders.

“1 I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— 2 for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. 3 This is good, and pleases God our Savior…” -1 Timothy 2:1-3

thanks dance postures

celebrate dance postures

Praise Him with Dance

Liturgical Dance to Psalm 150I had the complete joy recently to teach a six week dance class to students at Ecclesia Classes in Pasadena.  We danced at Ecclesia’s Christmas party to Psalm 150, produced and sung by the Harrow Family on their album, A New Commandment.

We also had the privilege of inviting the community to worship with us through movement after we danced. After all, this Psalm is a call to worship.

So, I taught the audience gestures to the song, “I Love You Lord,” and invited them to worship to the song with us. It was really moving to watch whole families moving in worship.

Enjoy this dance and let it draw you to praise our Jesus, our creator, redeemer and shepherd.

Please share in the comments about any dances you were able to share during the Christmas season and how they impacted those to whom you ministered.

Four Things I Learned from our Advent Dance

I posted this last year after the team I lead at Sherwood Presbyterian Church had the privilege of dancing in worship during Advent.

If you are preparing to dance in worship this advent, I think the lessons I learned will encourage and help you. So, I’m reposting this.

We danced to a song called, “And a Child Will Lead” by a friend and one of my favorite artists, Douglas Eltzroth. It was such a joy and an honor, and the Lord taught me some important lessons in the process. Here they are:

1) Sometimes Less is More: Continue reading “Four Things I Learned from our Advent Dance”

Begin Where You Are and Resist Criticizing

Beginner Praise Dance ChristmasDon’t despise the days of small beginnings.

I choreographed the dance below three years ago and it is dear to me.

Warning: There is a huge garment problem right at the beginning. Don’t let that hinder you from being blessed by this dance.

In fact, in a way, that garment snafu is part of my point in posting this video. There are many things I could critique about this dance regarding the garments, the group choreography, even or especially, our hair. But it this dance is dear to me, and it still moves me.

Watch it, and you’ll see what I mean.

Continue reading “Begin Where You Are and Resist Criticizing”

A Christmas Gift to Jesus

redgiftinhandbranding When my oldest son went to preschool, his class prepared a Christmas program to present to the parents. His teacher told them as they practiced for this big event, “This is your Christmas gift to Jesus.” My son, who doesn’t normally care for performing, set his heart on being a wise man, practiced diligently, and walked tall, bearing a crown and toting a box of frankincense. I loved the way his teacher framed their program – as a gift for Jesus, something they could put their heart into, do their best and offer to the Lord.

I admit, while I love receiving gifts, buying gifts often feels stressful to me. Will they like what I chose? Can I afford what they would like most? Have I chosen the right color, style, size, etc. But when I have a gift that I am confident is just right for my loved one, one that fits them to a tee and that expresses my love to them, I love giving the gift. It gives me joy anticipating when I can give it. Giving just the right gift is a delight. So, when I prepare to dance during advent, I remind myself that this is my Christmas gift to the Lord (and to His people). It infuses rehearsals with a greater joy and purpose. I tell my team, “This is your Christmas gift to the Lord.” The children walk taller knowing that they have something to give the Lord who has given so much to them. Of course, every gift to the Lord is simply returning to Him what He has already given us. Nonetheless, He loves it.

Advent rehearsal dance scarvesThis year our dance team is preparing to dance to a song written by a friend of mine, Doug Eltzroth called, “And a Child Shall Lead Them,” based on Isaiah 11:6-9.

The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them.

And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.

And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice’ den.

They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.

10 And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious.

My team is working hard, we love the choreography. We can’t wait to share the dance with the congregation. The song talks about the healing, reconciliation, peace and restoration that Jesus brings. We are praying for God to bring healing and restoration to individuals and families in our congregation. We are praying for Jesus to work powerfully in people’s lives. We are looking forward to the joy of dancing. And I can’t wait to give this latest gift that I am working on to Jesus.

Are you dancing for advent? I’d love to hear about it (better yet, see videos – feel free to leave a link). I pray that He fills you with joy in the giving and equips you with all you need to offer Him your best.

Matthew 2:11 And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshiped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense and myrrh.