Sometimes you have to get out of the way to see what another person/other people can do. I’ve been leading the dance ministry team at my home church for the past 11 years. Today my husband and I had our last Sunday at this church he/we planted 11 years ago and the church gave us a “farewell” reception. It was incredible – more than I expected, certainly more than I deserved. One friend shared a poem she wrote for us, another a funny and meaningful song about our family and ministry, another prepared a slide show, others shared stories and words of encouragement. Each one was moving, precious, inspiring. What floored me, though, was what the dance team shared. Let me preface this by saying that I have choreographed all our dances all the years I’ve been at this church (except for a season when I had another dancer who helped me). The three who have danced with me this year only dance when we dance together (although one girl started taking dance lessons this year). There is one woman and two girls. I was disappointed but not surprised about a month ago when, after I told my team member and dear friend that we were leaving the church to move to California, she said, “I don’t think the dance ministry will continue in the same way without you.” So, I was completely floored when they got up to do a dance at our reception. They choreographed it all without me having any idea they were up to this. It was so moving, so beautiful, simple and yet powerful. I knew these three were special. I love them. But I did not realize the anointing on them, did not know what they were capable of, until I saw what they could do without me.
As I watched the dance, I thought, “Where did they learn this?” They haven’t taken all the dance ministry classes I’ve been taking over these past years. Only one of them has taken dance lessons. They haven’t studied choreography. And yet what they danced was more powerful to me than than anything I’ve ever choreographed for them. It was original, it was beautiful, and it was obvious that they were not performing. They were worshiping.
As I sat there, I thought, “Lord, you ARE in this!” I know. That should be obvious. I know that. I talk about it. But I had to watch a dance that I had nothing to do with to truly recognize His anointing. It confirmed to me one of my core convictions: You don’t have to have years of training to join the dance. You can begin right where you are at. What you think is clumsy and awkward is a beautiful offering to the Lord, if it is offered in love to Him. (This dance was not clumsy or awkward in any way.) You are more graceful and beautiful thank you know. Your dance can soften hearts, move mountains, and invite the presence of the Lord.
This woman and these girls have had a little training. Of course, they have been taught by me, and I’m not minimizing what God has given to me to give to them. But He magnified what I have given to them, made it their own, gave it a flavor and anointing that is distinct from mine, and showed me that dance ministry will continue even as I leave this church. Praise God. Enjoy this dance.
A side note: Please don’t let the fact that they don’t have full skirts or palazzo pants hinder you from recognizing and receiving their anointing. I have been the keeper of the garments. They put together these garments this week (My friend sewed the beautiful tunics just for this dance) without access to the skirts and dresses that I have always supplied. The Lord actually prompted me this week to pass onto them the dresses the girls usually wear that I own. But I said, “But what if they don’t use them? What if I need them for my girls in California?” I didn’t pass them to them. I will now. Nonetheless, I love the leggings, and think they add drama and simplicity at the same time.