This exercise, inspired by the Divine Choreography DVD by Dancing for Him is a great exercise to use with your team or dance class to see how something as simple as varying your position on the stage can add interest and variety to your choreography. Continue reading “Add Variety to your Choreography by Varying Stage Positions”
Tag: biblical teaching
Learn How to Choreograph Dances that Minister
What do you need to make an impact in dances, inspiration or knowledge of choreography? In Divine Choreography, Lynn Hayden’s answer is both. She begins by explaining that “Whatever offering you bring to the Lord (if it is presented with a humble and submissive worshiper’s heart) will be a sweet smelling savor to our Lord.” (p.11) At the same time, she points out that “if a dance is interesting and has a lot of variety, it will, more than likely hold the audience’s attention longer and thereby minister more effectively.” (p. 22). So, she first instructs the dancer to pray over a dance, listen to the song over and over, to listen to the Spirit, and to consider fasting, so that the inspiration comes from the Lord. Continue reading “Learn How to Choreograph Dances that Minister”
Dancing for “them” or for Him?
Here’s another must have resource for worship dancers. Written by Lynn Hayden of Dancing for Him Ministries, Dancing for Him (to purchase, click here) is a guide to understand the heart attitude necessary to minister effectively through dance, to understand the scriptural significant of the movements we do and what effect they have in the spiritual realm, and it provides practical wisdom for a dance ministry team leader.
Dancing for Him explains how dance can be used in praise and worship time, for prophetic ministry to an individual or group, and for gospel presentations. It
The part of the book that provoked the most thought for me was in chapter 7, Performance vs. Ministry. pastor Lynn distinguished between several categories of Christian dancers: those who dance because they enjoy dance and like to dance to Christian music; those who want to take back the arts for the Lord; and those who dance solely to minister to the Lord and to minister to people.
I see myself in a combination of the categories. I began dancing in worship with no training and with the sole desire to minister to the Lord and people through dance. Over the past few of years, the Lord has enabled me to gain training so that I am now also I a moderately I skilled dancer with a desire to take back dance for the Lord. I don’t separate this from ministering to people through dance. I teach worship dance to children whose parents are so grateful to have a Christ centered environment for their children to dance in. I see offering dance to them as a ministry. The ministry begins with taking back dance for the Lord. But this is not separate from ministering to the children and teaching them to be ministers. Usually, we end a session of dance class with a ministry a presentation at a nursing home. I teach the children that this is ministry, not performance. We pray for the residents together, and they pray at home. They love dancing before other people. There is joy in the act of dancing. But they know the reason we are there is not to get applause or impress people, but to tell God’s stories and prepare the way for him to move in people’s hearts.
Like the children, I love to dance. Even when I’m not ministering, even when I’m not overtly worshiping (like when I’m taking a class in the studio), I love to dance. It’s a joy to move the body god gave me in a way that is beautiful; however, that does not compare to the joy and meaning I find in worshiping Gd through dance and dancing in ministry. So, I see myself in all three categories. The most important part of dance for me is worshiping the Lord. From there, it is a privilege to grow in skill and to minister to others.
This book will challenge you to ask yourself if you are dancing for “them” or for Him.
It will give you practical wisdom about how to use dance in praise and worship, in gospel presentations, and in prophetic ministry. It will also encourage about the power that God releases as we move before Him in worship and ministry.
It’s a fantastic complement to Pastor Lynn’s other book and DVD, Dance, Dance, Dance! which is available in my store.
What does the Lord think of Dance? What’s the purpose of Dance in ministry?
What does God think of dance? Does it please Him or offend Him? I read on a blog today that, “dance is a great sin and a very horrible vice because it degrades the common morality and degrades traditional Christian values.” Wow.
I’ve been dancing as worship for many years now and studying have studied what the bible says about it. I know He was pleased when David danced and displeased when Micah judged him for it. I know that Miriam, the first prophetess, danced after the Israelites crossed the Red Sea, so I’m confident that dance has a place in the Lord’s heart and will. But I studied, Dance, Dance, Dance! this week, by Lynn Hayden of Dancing for Him and felt like the Lord opened my understanding about dance.
Dance, Dance, Dance! is a great resource for the dancer who wants to know more about dance and movement in the bible, who wants to go beyond the questions, “Is it okay?” to asking, “When and how should we use it? and “What difference can dance make in the Kingdom of God.”
In reading the first section of the book, what struck me was how much a part of Hebrew culture that dance is. The Israelites danced in response to victory in battle, to being restored, and to express joy. They danced to find a spouse and to celebrate a marriage. Dancing was part of life, and often was a community activity. Sometimes, but not always, it was an act of worship. In the cases of David and Miriam, the dance was an expression of praise and the dancers exulted in the presence of God. Other times, dance was more of a community activity, and sometimes it was an act of sin: The daughters of Shiloh came out dancing to attract husbands, and the Israelites danced before the golden calf. So, this says to me that the desire to dance is part of being human. When we dance in response to God’s goodness, He affirms our dance. When we dance as part of our culture, scripture acknowledges it, not necessarily affirming nor condemning it. When our dance is an act of idolatry, as when the Israelites danced around the golden calf, or lust, as when the daughter of Herodias danced before Herod (Mark 6:22), it grieves The Lord. So, what I got from that is that dance, in itself, isn’t good or bad, rather its value comes from the motivation and heart condition of the dancer.
It was the words that connote movement that moved me the most in the book. Dance, Dance, Dance! lists Hebrew and Greek words, their English translation, and then the definition of the words. I was moved to learn the power that is released when we move in the ways scriptures describes. Spinning can be an act of intercession (chul, p. 37) or can be like a battering ram against the enemy (karar, p. 65). Jumping and shaking can shake off bondage (nathar, p. 73). Waving hands or streamers can be a perfume of fire that drives out the enemy (tnuwphah, p. 91). The Lord compasses about us. He surrounds us with His mercy and protection (cabab, Psalm 32:10). Through movement we can break of chains that the enemy has placed on people (p. 129). I’m an intercessor. I think one of my primary callings is intercessory prayer. This book created many strong links for me between movement and intercession, gave me a language for intercessory movement, and increased my movement vocabulary for prayer. I have always loved using expressive sign on my dances because of the clear meaning that the movements communicate. Dance, Dance, Dance! showed me how other dance movements like spinning, walking, waving arms and leaping can be not only beautiful but full of meaning and powerful and effective to bring healing and deliverance.
If you are leading others in dance, you need this book. It will equip you to teach others what the bible says about dance and movement and will teach you to choreograph with greater meaning and power. Also, consider purchasing the Dance, Dance, Dance! DVD, for sale in my store.
Now is the Time
Have you been thinking about purchasing my children’s worship dance curriculum? Now is a great time to buy it.
1) You’ll receive my updated videos which include live teaching and footage from dance class. I’ve been getting great feedback from those who have received these videos. I’m adding them to the current package without changing the price.
2) You can purchase a hard copy of the book, if you’d like. I’ve had many people ask about this.
3) You can purchase the book separately from the videos, allowing you to get started with the book alone for a lower price, if that suits your needs better.
4) As a reward for taking action this next week (before March 8), you’ll receive the gift of “Raising Up Worshipful Children” Teleseminar audios with your curriculum. This will teach you how to build a worshipful children ministry and how to use the activities in my book. I taught with Jocelyn Richard of The Praise Dance Life. You’ll receive two 1-hour audio messages as well as slides that accompanied the class.
So, if you have been thinking about purchasing the curriculum for yourself or for a friend, there’s no better time than now.
To learn more, click here.
How Do You Know if You are Called to Dance?
Are you called to dance ministry? How do you know if you are called? What if you aren’t called? In this 6 minute video, I teach from Lynn Hayden’s DVD “Called to Dance” (available at www.dancingforhim.com) where Pastor Lynn shares her own testimony of being called to dance, helps worship dancers answer the question, “Am I called to dance?” and answers many other questions that dancers have asked her over the years. In this video, I share teaching from “Called to Dance” as well as my own testimony of being called to dance.
At the heart of this video and of being called to dance is being in relationship with God and being in His presence. If we spend time dancing before the Lord in private, it will show when we dance in front of others.
I’ll be creating weekly 4-6 minute videos with teachings from the Dancing for Him course I am taking this year. If you would like to receive notices about these uploads, getting bite sized teachings on dance technique and dance ministry leadership, subscribe to my YouTube Channel.
What I can offer you
I was recently challenged to really consider the people I’m called to serve, what their needs are, and how the gifts and experiences God has given me can benefit them. I started writing and, right away, it was like God was pouring into me what He wanted me to offer you. So, take a look at the questions below. If one of them speaks to you, I believe the Lord has given me something to offer you. Read more to find out what that is.
1. Do you know and love Jesus and have a longing to dance but doubt you are qualified?
2. Do you have years of dance training that you want to learn to use to honor the Lord?
3. Have you been trained in the art of dance, its biblical basis, and are you experienced in leading others?
4. Last but definitely not least, are you a parent with a child who loves to dance who wants to nurture their love for dance in a Christ-centered environment?
1. Do you know and love Jesus and have a longing to dance but doubt you are qualified? Let me first say to you that you are not too old or too young to bless the Lord by dancing before Him. 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. You are more graceful and beautiful thank you know. Your dance can soften hearts, move mountains, and invite the presence of the Lord.
I specialize in choreographing simple movements than anyone can use to worship the Lord. That’s how I was invited into the dance. A woman, who used simple everyday movements in her choreography, invited men, women and children of every age and skill level to join in worshiping the Lord through dance. So, that is my passion, to activate others who have a heart for dance and don’t yet have the movement vocabulary to express it.
I’m working on a project right now called “Worship in Motion – Devotional Dances.” These simple dances have been designed so that anyone can do them in the morning hours to offer their bodies to the Lord.
Also, if you live near me, watch for local workshops. I have one this weekend. Learn more here. Whether you want to learn to worship the Lord in private or have a desire to lead the congregation as a worship dancer, you will go home equipped with new vocabulary, biblical understanding, and tools for worship.
2. Do you have years of dance training that you want to learn to use to honor the Lord? I can teach you the biblical basis for dance and the heart of worship dance. In my worship dance curriculum “And a Child Shall Lead Them – Ten Worship Dance Lessons for Children,” I instruct teachers, leaders, and parents how to lay a biblical foundation for dance for their children, how to build a vocabulary of worship, how to dance the scriptures, and how to keep a kingdom mindset through it all. The book has clear lesson objectives, lists of songs to choose from, photos, lists additional resources, and two short videos that come with it that include teaching by me, live footage from my classes, and photos of signs and gestures that you can incorporate in your own choreography to tell God’s stories. You can take this curriculum, add dance technique teaching, and have a rich, Christ-centered worship dance curriculum.
In addition, if you live local to me, I would love to partner with you in dance workshops. I would love to partner with someone who could offer more dance technique while I teach the biblical aspect of dance, dance ministry, and simple movements to use in worship.
3. Have you been trained in the art of dance, its biblical basis, and are you experienced in leading others? Praise God. I invite you to come alongside me as I invite others into the dance. I love to connect new worship dancers with the people and resources to help them grow. I know I don’t have it all, and I love to work with others who have skills and knowledge that can help me and others. I would love to partner with you in equipping women and children to worship through dance. (By the way, I know worship dance isn’t just for women and children. It’s just that I feel especially called to this group of people because who I am, how I dance, and what the Lord has put on my heart.) Let’s share resources and ideas. Let’s get connected if we aren’t already on Facebook. Comment on my blog, share your wisdom and expertise and invite others to your website. Let me know if you would be open to being interviewed for my blog.
4. Last but definitely not least, are you a parent with a child who loves to dance who wants to nurture their love for dance in a Christ-centered environment? Get my worship dance curriculum, “And a Child Shall Lead Them – Ten Worship Dance Lessons for Children.” I wrote this book for people like you. While I have sold many of these to dance ministry leaders, you were on my heart and mind when I wrote it. This book was written for parents to use at home to lay a biblical foundation for dance with their children and to invite the joy that comes through dancing Jesus into your home. The lesson plans are laid out for you. The movements are simple. There are pictures and videos to guide you. And you can even hand the book to your older child and let them go.
If you live near Sherwood, Oregon, of course, take a look at the classes I offer locally. They are a joy. Here’s what one mother said and it captures what I pray happens in the classes I teach: “I cannot begin to tell you how much my daughter enjoyed the dance class. She came home dancing every week! It was so worshipful and wholesome….the perfect way to experience dance in a Christ-centered environment.”
If one of those questions described you, let me know. Share in the comment section, let me know more about what your needs are. As the Lord opens doors, I would love to serve you.
Will You Trust Him with the Desires of Your Heart?
I’m writing this post from my parents’ home in Arizona. I’m so thankful to be able to spend this holiday with them. It’s been over ten years since I’ve spent Thanksgiving with my parents, as my husband and I decided years ago that flying at Thanksgiving is too costly and difficult. But this year, I felt like I needed to see my family. It had been too long. I wanted my children to spend time with their grandparents sometime during the holidays. Friends prayed for me, and the Lord opened a way. I’m so grateful that He cares about the things that matter to us.
This vacation is bringing a needed rest for me and for my family. I’ve been super busy over the last six months – first completing my website, then writing and finishing my e-book, then preparing to teach at a couple of teleseminars, all the while homeschooling my three boys and teaching worship dance to children. I write this to acknowledge what God has allowed me to to. He allowed me to complete these works, to gain satisfaction from the work, and to touch the lives of others. He has been gracious to me to permitting me space to pursue what’s been on my heart. He has shown that He cares about the things that matter to me.
Accomplishing these ministry projects has come challenges, though. My husband and children have been missing me. I have felt torn between home and ministry, even though they should be one. So, this time while I’m in Arizona is affording me the time to connect better with my children, to play with them, to listen to them, to enjoy them. And it’s offering me time to reflect, to ask the Lord to help me to learn how to order my time aright. (Lord, teach me to number my days aright so that I might gain a heart of wisdom. Psalm 90:12) There is always enough time for what He has called us to do; however, I need to be connected enough to Him to distinguish between what He’s really calling me to do and what activities are distractions.
I’m asking Him to give me willingness to let go of anything that is a distraction as well as willingness to give myself to the work that matters most to Him.
I’m asking Him to help me not to be afraid that if I say, “Not my will but yours be done,” that I’ll lose something of value. Isn’t that Satan’s favorite lie, that if we do what God wants, we’ll lose out? That’s the same lie he used in the Garden of Eden. But the truth is, that God is the giver of every good gift and when He does take something from us, He does it for our good. But when we cling to what we think we need/want, we miss out on this good. (Those who cling to worthless idols forfeit the grace that could have been theirs. Jonah 2:8)
What about you?
What desires of your heart has the Lord allowed to come to fruition this year?
Are you at peace with how your home life integrates with your ministry and how your lifestyle supports your callings to each? If so, I would love to hear how. Please comment and share.
Are you clinging to any worthless idols that stand in the way of receiving grace from the Lord? Remember that God is the gift of every good gift. Don’t be deceived by the enemies lies. Trust the Lord to give you what is truly good.