What should I wear to minister in dance?

What should I wear to minister in dance?
Is what is appropriate for the stage appropriate for the sanctuary?
Do I need to wear layers of skirts when I dance to be holy?
I know that my dance is to be set apart for the LORD’s purposes. What does that mean for what I am to wear?

regular clothes as worship garments
My dancers and I in 2010 in our red and black clothing, simple, beautiful street clothing

When I started dancing in worship, my answers to those questions were fairly simple: I was worshiping, so I wore clothes suitable for Sunday worship, ones that were modest, flexible enough to move in, and beautiful. I shopped in regular stores when preparing for a ministry piece, choosing skirts and pants that flowed and tops that fit the color scheme I had been led to. I always kept my eye out for street clothes that could also be dance clothes.

Praise dance choreography tips using motif
Dressed for beauty and God’s glory in this gold overlay, full white skirt, with culottes underneath.

When I connected with the praise dance community and gained training, my answers changed some. I saw and loved what my fellow worship dancers wore – flowing dresses, beautiful overlays, culottes underneath skirts for additional flow and modesty. I learned good reasons to dress this way, for modesty, for beauty, for God’s glory. I started shopping at the websites of anointed worship dancers who created garments specially for worship.

Now I am again part of a start up church for which dancing in worship is unfamiliar to most. It would feel out of place for me to arrive for worship in a long white dress and sequined overlay. To those in worship, it would look like a costume and would set me apart as a performer. So again, I have asked myself the questions above.

I dressed in street clothes to dance at the first worship service of our new church. The pictures show the small space that my dance had to fit into.

My friend, Leslie Passerino, a powerfully anointed dance minister, shared with me an article she wrote as she asked the Lord some of the same questions. The answers the Lord spoke to her spoke to some of my questions, and so I thought they might speak to some of yours. I share this with you humbly, with not intention to tell you what you must or must not wear, but perhaps to give you some freedom to ask the Lord yourself.

Here is what Leslie wrote. (French is her first language. I wish my French was as good as her English. I have left the story in her words.)

Two years ago, I started to question myself about garment….I looked after the “perfect garments” but nothing came on my heart nor through prayer nor through a revelation nor through a dream. N.O.T.H.I.N.G.

So, I doubted that my calling was to be a dance minister or a simple dancer. But the Holy Spirit confirmed me I was called. For sure the garments are to be modest even they are simple. But I desperate to find something. I tried so much, and when I say “so much” I mean it. During two years, I received a lot of opinions from France, from Montreal and from USA…. But nothing resonates in my heart. It was a nightmare. I focused so hard on it that I missed the point.

  1. Garments are important but NOT vital
  2. Garments should fit with your church, your calling and your anointing
  3. Garments should not be about ME but about HIM.

So, I realised that I was totally to much vain here. Need to repent first. So, from end of February 2017 to middle of April I almost did not dance. We had a special event where we, all the dancers, wore red and white garments.  After my time off to release my futility and my pride out off me, The Holy Spirit talked to me. He asked me five questions:

  1. How is your church? Answer: cutting edge, trendy, prophetic, caring people, anointed for emotional healing.
  2. How is your city? Answer: full of different people from all nations, a lot of activities outside, trendy, open mind, happy, colorful
  3. What kind of clothes wore Jesus during his ministry? Answer: amazing fabric, one piece, but SIMPLE… not like a king.
  4. Why? If He was dressed as a king it would be difficult to touch Him, to be near of HIM… So, with his “simple clothes” people could come closed to Him and be healed, saved, delivered.
  5. So, what does it mean to you now? Answer: I have to be just me, dance outside, talk to people, love them, pray for them, show them how HE loves them through the movement

Leslie’s answer was that, in her context and for her calling, the layers of flowing garments fit for the daughter of a king were not fitting. She was to wear simple clothing that did not draw attention to herself, distinguish her from those to whom she ministered, or attract attention.

For others, the answer will be different. The answer need not be the same for every dance.  What I love about Leslie’s story is that she did not only ask the experts. She asked the Lord, and He gave her an answer. Reading her story gives me freedom. I am grateful for what I have learned from the experts, but it does not exempt me from asking, “What do you want me to wear here, now, with these people?”

Please joint the discussion in the comments section. Feel free to respond honestly.

What do you think?
How is your church? How is your city? What does that mean for you?
What has the Lord shown you?
Do you dress differently in different contexts?
Is there any absolute from scripture that you know you must check any revelation you or others receive against?

Why Use Flags or Banners in Worship?

worship flags scriptureWhat is the point of using flags or banners in worship?

Does the bible say anything about worshiping with flags?

Are flags a distraction, drawing people’s attention to the dancer when they should be worshiping?

Have you asked or been asked any of these questions? If so, read on to learn how flags were used in scripture and four important ways you can use them in spiritual warfare and ministry in worship.

In Processionals, Props and Pageantry, Pastor Lynn Hayden talks about the scriptural significance of banners. Scripture uses the words, banner, ensign, flag and standard. All of these are used in reference to warfare and, you will see, are relevant to our worship. Watch this 9-minute video to learn how.

Thanks so much for joining me today. Please join the discussion.

Why do you use flags or banners in worship?

What you have seen the Lord do when you have worshiped with flags?

Did this video raise any questions for you?

I’d love to hear from you.

Worshipful Ronde de Jambe sequence

ballet for worshipThe ronde de jambe is one of my favorite movements in dance. It is so graceful and communicates reverence and adoration. So, when given the assignment to create a tutorial from Lynn Hayden’s Ballet III DVD, I chose her ronde de jambe sequence.  You can watch this 4 minutes video below. Enjoy and feel free to borrow from for your own choreography. Continue reading “Worshipful Ronde de Jambe sequence”

Archive Summer Dance Camp 2016

Do you have a child who loves to dance?
Are you looking for meaningful summer activities for your child?
Would you like to see your child connect their love for dance with a love for the Lord?

Then this camp is for you.

Psalm 141 instructs us to “Make His Praise Glorious.” In this week-long summer dance camp, you child will learn to do just that. We will focus on using flags, streamers, and billow cloths to offer our praise to Jesus.

Here’s what your child has to look forward to:

Monday: Words are Not Enough. Children will build a worship vocabulary using expressive sign and worship flags.
Tuesday: Not Empty but Full – Divine Choreography Begins in our Hearts. Children will learn the difference between empty and full worship dance and how to use simple choreography techniques to create beautiful movements.
Wednesday: Colors Speak – Pay attention to Meaning. Children will learn to use props with a purpose, as tools, not toys.
Thursday: Beautiful Warriors – Our Weapon is Praise. Children will learn the biblical significance of waving  banners and will learn to use billow cloths to create glorious expressions of praise.
Friday: Ministering through Dance – Putting it All Together. Children will put the techniques and lessons we’ve learned together and will share a worshipful dance to minister to their parents.

Each child registered before June 20 will receive a set of beautiful worship flags to keep.

Who: Children ages 7 and up

Where: Magnolia Dance Space 4 Esther Street
When: June 27 – July 1, 10 AM-12 PM
Cost: $80 online registration rate, $85 at the door

Do you consult others when you choreograph?

When choreographing, should a dance leader look to hear team for inspiration and confirmation about choreography?

Or, does seeking the opinions of others muddy a leader’s connection with God and what He specifically wants to say through her dance?

Does God primarily reveal His Word for the dance through the anointed, appointed leader?

Or, is it important to listen to and gain ideas from a group of Spirit-filled dancers, so that we can more fully understand what God is trying to say?pasadena praise dance workshop

At the Unlocking Movement that Speaks prophetic movement workshop this past Saturday in Pasadena, these questions simmered among us and left me with some questions for the Lord, “How do you want this done, Lord? How do you speak? How do you want me to best listen?”

At the heart of the discussion were really two paradigms for choreography: Continue reading “Do you consult others when you choreograph?”

Position your dance for greater impact in 2016

prophetic dance studySometimes you read a book and find it inspiring, but as soon as you finish it, you move on, doing life just as you did before you read it. You know there is truth in the book, but somehow those truths don’t work their way into your life. They don’t translate into action for you personally.

 

And then there are those books that change you. They are the ones you go back to and read more than once. They are the books that you share with your friends. They are the books that shape you and from which you can trace changes you made in your life that set you on a course for the better.

 

What makes the difference between the two books?

 

I think there are two things:

 

First, of course, is the quality of the message. Did the author have something to say that, when applied, has the potential to change your thinking and, beyond that, your life?

 

Second, you have to spend enough time to ingest what a book says. You need to reflect on how it relates to your life and your calling. You need to chew on what you read, talk about it, maybe write about it, and out of that, make decisions on how you will apply those revelations, how you will act on them.

worship dance tele seminar

Dancers! Assume the Position is a books with a message that can transform your thinking and your approach to dance ministry. I am finding that to be true for myself, and I’ve heard others say the same.

 

Here’s what a couple of others have written about it:

 

This book is more than thought-provoking. It has unbound my creativity and moved me to another level, while reinforcing what I knew about my purpose in dance. I will now use this book as required reading in my dance ministry workshops and teachings. – Loretta Green

 

As soon as I started  to read this book I didn’t want to put it down. It answered so many questions I was thinking. I had been praying for more direction and God led me to this book!….It’s a book you want to read over and over again. Annabel Taylor

 

We have the amazing opportunity to study this book with the author. We have the chance to digest it, to ask questions of the author as we read, to ask questions of ourselves, to apply it to our own situation and calling, and ultimately, we have the chance to let God reshape us, redirect us, and set our course for 2016 and beyond.

 

I invite you to join me as I host Marlita Hill as she teaches from this book, beginning next Saturday, January 30. This will be a four part class, the first class of which is free.

 

In this class, you will:

 

•Construct a clear picture of the dancer’s ministry

•Identify how ministry is worked through dance

•Learn to collaborate with God in the various areas of your ministry, including songs choices, choreography, and ministry opportunities

•Clearly trace what the dancer contributes to God, the individual, the congregation, and the body of Christ

•Identify the mindset necessary for effective ministry

•Draw a clear distinction between the activity of dance and ministering through dance, so that God can minister through you, unhindered, and in the fullness of His power.

Ultimately, you will fortify your assignment for 2016 with the support and encouragement of a seasoned teacher and fellow dancers.

So, I hope you will join me. You don’t need a plane ticket. You don’t need to reserve a hotel, rent a car, or leave your family for the weekend. You simply need to dial in (or connect in through the internet) for 2 hours on Saturday, January 30 (and the next 3 Saturdays, if you take the full course)

I’m excited to be able to offer this to you and hope you will take advantage of it.

register free teleseminar
Click to register

 

Perfect Gift for Dancers

the gift of danceDo you need a gift for your dance team?

For your Pastor, Pastor’s wife or Worship Leader?

For the children on your dance team or your Sunday School class?

For your prayer group?

Do you need a thoughtful gift, something both practical and creative, something that will enrich their lives for years to come?

Give your friends the gift of worship and movement by gifting them the Devotions in Motion video downloads. Continue reading “Perfect Gift for Dancers”

Dominion Dance Conference – Whittier, CA

worship dance los angelesWould you like to receive a fresh impartation in the dance?

Would you like to improve your technique by taking a master class?

Would you like to participate in an outdoor dance festival that will bless the city?

 

Would you like to build relationships with other dance ministers in the area?

 

If you live in Southern California, you have the opportunity to do all three of these this month. The Dominion Dance Conference in Whittier is right around the corner, on November 20 and 21.

I love the theme:  It’s The Latter Rain, taken out of (Joel 2:23) Be glad, O children of Zion, and rejoice in the LORD your God, for he has given the early rain for your vindication; he has poured down for you abundant rain, the early and the latter rain, as before.

 

I love that picture of a an abundant rain, pouring down from heaven. Rain softens the ground. May this rain soften hearts. Rain nourishes the ground. May our souls be nourished in worship. Rain causes seeds to germinate and grow. May the seeds already planted in our lives receive the water they need to germinate and grow. A heavy rain cleanses the streets and sidewalks. May our hearts be cleansed. Rain refreshes the earths. May lives be refreshed as God rains down His presence on this event.

I want to get rained on.

 

After participating in the When the Spirit Moves Dance concert last month with several of the teams who will be attending and leading at this conference, I felt strongly led to attend. I saw them minister with skill, beauty and power. I want more of what they have.

 

So, if you live in the area, I encourage you to come. If you want to come but just don’t know if you can make it, I encourage you to pray about it and see what the Lord says. Having just come back from a trip to South Carolina for another dance conference, I was uncertain I could get away for another weekend so soon afterwards. But my desire to go kept increasing, not diminishing. So, I prayed about it, shared my heart with my husband, and he gave me his blessing.

 

Here’s the link for the registration. You will save $10 off the at-the-door registration rate if you register online.

 

Continue reading “Dominion Dance Conference – Whittier, CA”

Recap: When the Spirit Moves Dance Concert

I was blessed to participate in the When the Spirit Moves Dance Concert at Victory Baptist Church this past Sunday. It was an awesome evening and such an honor to be a part of.  Thanks to Valerie Toliver and her team from Highest Praise Dance who organized the evening with excellence, the perfect blend of order that comes from careful planning, and freedom that comes from humbly being open to the Spirit of God. You made space for Him, and He came and blessed all who were there.

I want to share with you four ways where I saw His fingerprints on the event and to share the video of the dance we shared.

For those of you who prayed for this event, thank you so much. Here are some places where we saw His fingerprints on the event. Continue reading “Recap: When the Spirit Moves Dance Concert”

Training that Equips and Transforms

Pasadena dance workshopToday I’m celebrating a huge milestone and want to share the joy with you. I also want to give you a window into an incredible training experience for worship dancers that is available to you no matter where you live: The Dancing for Him Online Training School.

This week, I completed my final assignment for Level 2 of Dancing for Him’s Online Training School. Yippee!!! Hooray!!! Thank you, Lord!!  Happy dance!

This completed two years of study, creativity, fellowship and transformation for me. I am so grateful that the Lord enabled me to take this course, and I’m leaving it with a Worship Dance Teacher’s Certificate and a Dance Minister’s Certificate of License.

I can only begin to outline the benefits. Continue reading “Training that Equips and Transforms”